Air Transat has taken delivery of its latest two Airbus A321 neo LR aircraft, with the planes flown over using a sustainable aviation fuel  (SAF) blend.

The move saw the jets being powered by a kerosene blend containing 10 per cent SAF, with the delivery taking place between Hamburg Finkenwerder airport (part of Airbus’s Hamburg plant) and Montreal Trudeau International.

It was a first both for Air Transat, and for the Hamburg plant – previously delivery using SAF was offered to Airbus customers at the manufacturer’s plants in Toulouse and Alabama.

Air Transat said that the delivery flights were also carbon-neutral, as the fossil fuel portion of the flight was offset by the purchase of carbon credits.

The A321LR aircraft are the fifth and sixth to be delivered to Air Transat, as part of an agreement with AerCap for the long-term lease of 17 A321 neos (16 of which will be the LR variant).

The carrier received the first of the aircraft in May last year, and prior to Covid-19 was operating the jets on routes including Toronto-Gatwick, Toronto-Glasgow and Toronto-Manchester.

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Commenting on the news Jean-François Lemay, president and general manager, Air Transat, said:

“It is an honour for us and a sign of confidence from Airbus to be, together with AerCap, its first customer to take advantage of this new delivery option at its Hamburg plant.

“This initiative is part of our commitment to reducing our own carbon footprint while contributing to the achievement of the airline industry’s ambitious decarbonization targets.”

“We are proud to be the first Canadian carrier to operate carbon-neutral flights, and we will continue to pursue our commitment to providing our passengers with a travel experience that takes account of our environmental footprint.”