Boeing 787 in KLM and A350 exclusive to Air France
Group that controls the two airlines would have decided to separate the fleets of the two advanced widebodies
The formation of corporate groups that bring together more than one major airline has become popular in recent years and with them also issues to standardize fleets of aircraft. One such case is Air France-KLM, which brings together the two flag carriers of France and the Netherlands.
But, according to the Travelers Club website, the new president of the group, Benjamin Smith, has already decided: while KLM will be with the new Boeing 787 Air France will operate exclusively the Airbus A350.
Although they have relatively different capacity, the two jets could overlap on some routes. The solution found by the group resembles that used by LATAM Airlines. The South American company also operates the two widebodies, however, while the Chilean division has exclusivity in the 787 the Brazilian concentrates the A350.
Today there are 20 Boeing 787-9 jets in the two companies, 13 in KLM and 7 in Air France which is about to receive two more aircraft. The order for Boeing involves 19 787-9 and 6 787-10 in addition to the leasing of another 12 aircraft.
In the new scenario the next 787 will all be delivered to KLM, however, it is unclear whether Air France will pass on its jets to the Dutch partner in the coming years.
A350 stay in France
The situation of the Airbus A350-900 is more predictable after all the jets have not yet begun to be delivered. But the first unit should be received by Joon, the low-cost airline that the CEO of Air France-KLM is closing.
Of the 25 planes ordered, seven were expected to go to KLM, but last year the airline had reported that deliveries would be delayed by 2021. Rumors that these planes never arrived have since emerged and were right.