The first Bombardier CRJ700 aircraft landed at Tallinn airport on Friday to start serving Estonian Air regular flights. The second aircraft will arrive this week.
The 70-seater CRJ700 aircraft will serve Estonian Air flights to Stockholm, Brussels, Oslo, and Kiev, among other destinations. In parallel, Estonian Air is also using an 88-seater Bombardier CRJ900 and one Embraer 170 aircraft in its fleet.
“We have now started redelivery process of our four Embraer 170 aircraft, as stated in our restructuring plan, and the last of those planes will leave Estonian Air in December," said Jan Palmér, CEO of the company. "This gives us the opportunity to create a one-type fleet of CRJ aircraft where the 76-seater Embraer aircraft will be substituted with 70-seater Bombardier. For a relatively small airline like Estonian Air, this will save costs and increase flexibility."
By March next year, it is expected that Estonian Air will be through the transition period where the airline has to use some aircraft from other airlines. “The plan is to operate altogether with 5-6 Bombardier regional jet aircraft on routes to and from Tallinn, and one smaller turboprop on Tallinn-Stockholm-Bromma route from March next year. On top of that, we hope to operate with another 2-4 CRJ regional jet aircraft as capacity providers to other companies,” added Palmér.
The lease contract for the Bombardier jets has been signed for two years.
The state-owned Estonian Air, founded in 1991 and headquartered in Tallinn, is the largest carrier at Tallinn Airport. It currently has two business lines: serving direct flights of strategic importance for Estonia and of substantial demand, and providing capacity to several major airlines in Europe and Scandinavia.
Bombardier Inc. is a Canadian multinational aerospace and transportation company, founded in 1942 and starting as a maker of snow machines.
Editor: M. Oll