The new aircraft – one of which is currently on display at the Farnborough International Airshow – will be used for services between Mahé and Praslin, as well as other islands in the Seychelles archipelago, including Bird, Denis and Frégate. Named ‘Isle of Bird’ and ‘Isle of La Digue,’ both aircraft left the manufacturer’s base in British Columbia en route for Mahé Island, Seychelles.They stopped in Calgary where ferry fuel tanks were fitted for the extended flight to Seychelles.
Their route involves stops at several airports in Canada, Europe and Africa on their way to Seychelles, with Isle of La Digue on display at this week’s Farnborough Airshow in the United Kingdom.
The aircraft was officially handed over at the Farnborough show where Air Seychelles Chief Executive Officer, Manoj Papa commented: “As fully backed by our shareholders – the government of Seychelles and Etihad Airways – Viking is our preferred supplier and partner in the 19-seat aircraft category and it is with immense joy that we are taking delivery of these aircraft one year ahead of schedule.
“This aircraft, and Isle of Bird which is currently on its way to Seychelles, arrive at a time when Air Seychelles continues to improve its domestic flight operations, a satisfying reflection of our successful turnaround strategy.
“Both deliveries are a win-win for Air Seychelles and the thousands of passengers who island hop on domestic services every year in Seychelles. They are the right tools at the right time for our airline.”
The Chief Executive Officer of Viking Air, David C Curtis added: “I am extremely appreciative of the great deal of faith Air Seychelles has in Viking and in our ability to deliver aircraft ahead of time. We value this relationship and we are honoured that such a world-class carrier has made the Twin Otter Series 400 their aircraft of choice for domestic services.
“We also believe that our presence here at Farnborough will help to expand the Twin Otter Series 400 brand presence elsewhere in the world such as the Middle East and North African region.”