The TAP Airbus A330-900neo, named "D. João II, Príncipe Perfeito ", is carrying out flight TP088, the first commercial flight of this aircraft. The first Airbus A330neo took off the Humberto Delgado airport in Lisbon at 10:57 am and is due to land at Guarulhos Airport, in São Paulo, Brazil, at 18:27 (local time in São Paulo), effecting a flight of 11 hours and 25 minutes.
In Lisbon, already on board for this historic flight, TAP CEO Antonoaldo Neves surprised passengers by raffling his seat in business class among the Clients with a seat in economy class.
TAP Air Portugal is the first airline in the world to benefit the features of this larger-range aircraft and its new version of the Airspace cabin, which represents a new concept adjusted to the Company's ambition to offer the best product in the industry. By the end of 2019, TAP will receive more 19 Airbus A330-900neo aircraft.
"Today is an important day for TAP and for aviation, for Portugal and for Brazil, which for the first time is the destination of an inaugural commercial flight of a long-haul aircraft. TAP is now in history as the first airline in the world to fly the most efficient and comfortable airplane ever. The Airline is also a pioneer offering unlimited Wi-Fi text messaging on transatlantic flights," said Antonoaldo Neves, TAP's CEO.
In addition to the latest generation in-flight entertainment system and connectivity, such as Wi-Fi system, TAP Air Portugal’s first A330-900 features 298 seats in a comfortable three class layout with 34 full-flat business class, 96 economy plus and 168 economy class seats. The Airspace cabin by Airbus offers more personal space, larger overhead storage bins and advanced cabin lighting. The aircraft will strengthen and expand TAP's long-haul operation.
The A330neo is a true new generation aircraft. It incorporates the highly efficient new generation Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, and a new higher span 3D optimised wing with new sharklets fully optimized for the best aerodynamic performance. Together these advances bring a significant reduction in fuel consumption of 10 – 12 percent compared with older generation competitor aircraft of a similar size.
TAP has already received six new Airbus NEO aircraft this year and will continue to receive, reaching 37 new aircraft by the end of next year and 71 to 2025.
The renewal and growth of the TAP fleet has allowed the Company to announce new destinations and more frequencies. In North America, San Francisco, Washington and Chicago are the new destinations already on sale, joining New York-JFK, New York-Newark, Boston and Miami, departing from Lisbon, and New York-Newark departing from Porto, as well as Toronto, Canada.
TAP Air Portugal has already announced three other new destinations for 2019: Tel Aviv, Dublin and Basel.