Austrian Airlines and Air Berlin have concluded a wet lease agreement stipulating the lease of five aircraft operated by the Air Berlin Group. The airplanes will be successively integrated into the Austrian Airlines fleet in the months of March and April 2017. "With the five aircraft from Air Berlin, we will take advantage of market opportunities to strengthen our leading position at our hub Vienna", explains Austrian Airlines CEO Kay Kratky. "We are proud that we are in a position to actively participate in shaping the market consolidation process."
At present, the entire Austrian Airlines fleet consists of 80 aircraft. The airplanes to be leased by Austrian Airlines from Air Berlin involve five Airbus A320 jets, which will be operated in the future displaying the Austrian Airlines colors. The aircraft will be leased together with pilots and flight attendants. Austrian Airlines already has 31 aircraft of the A320 family in its fleet including seven Airbus A319, 18 A320 jets and six A321 planes. The wet lease agreement with Air Berlin will raise the number of Airbus jets in the Austrian Airlines fleet to 36 in total.
The wet lease deal comprises part of a framework agreement between the Lufthansa Group and Air Berlin to lease 38 aircraft for Eurowings and Austrian Airlines, and will apply subject to the approval of the Competition Authorities. The contractual partners have agreed to maintain confidentiality with respect to the terms and conditions of the lease payments.