October 28, 2020 / Kuwait Airways (KU) has received the first two of eight Airbus A330-800. These are also the very initial deliveries by Airbus of the shorter version of the A330neo. Kuwait Airways is the launch customer of the type and, after Hawaiian Airlines cancelled in 2018 its order for six A330-800 preferring to them 10 Boeing 787-9, the Kuwaiti carrier had also been for quite some time the only customer of the type worldwide. More recently, Uganda Airlines (UR) had ordered two (the first of which exited the paint shop just a few days ago), and Air Greenland (GL) one, while the remaining four order are from an unidentified customer.
Kuwait Airways already has five A330-200 in the fleet, but while those have a three-class cabin (First, Business and Economy), the neos have been configured in a two-class layout with 32 Business seats upfront and 203 seats in Economy, for a total of 235. A configuration which allows for a generous seat pitch as in Business as in Economy, a characteristic common to all aircraft in Kuwait Airways fleet, which also includes 10 Boeing 777-300ER, three Airbus A320neo and seven Airbus A320-200. An order for 10 Airbus A350-900 made in 2018 had been downsized to just 5 aircraft in 2018, with initial deliveries not yet announced, while three more A320neo are expected in Kuwait in the months to come.
KU has not revealed the day and the destination of its A330-800 inaugural flight. The extraordinary range capability of the aircraft, 8,150nm (15,100km) would allow KU to fly comfortably non-stop to such very long-haul destinations like Los Angeles and the US West Coast, or Sydney. (Photo Airbus)