The first Airbus A319 leased by East Star Airlines, a new Chinese airline, took to the sky successfully this week for its premier revenue flight from Wuhan to Shenzhen. The move makes East Star Airlines a new Airbus A319 operator on the Chinese Mainland.
Configured in a two-class layout, the aircraft provides capacity for 128 passengers. East Star plans to put this A319 into service on its newly opened trunk routes connecting Wuhan, Shenzhen, Haikou and Guangzhou.
“We are very proud to select the A319 for our first revenue flight and become the first private airline in Central China that operates the A319,” said Lan Shili, President of East Star Group, “its optimised cabin cross-section, the widest single-aisle fuselage on the market, sets a new standard for passenger comfort and its unmatched low operating costs will also help ensure a smooth kick-off of our business.”
Headquartered in Wuhan, the capital city of Hubei Province, East Star Airlines, with registered capital of RMB 80 million, received approval for operation from the General Administration of Civil Aviation of China (CAAC) on June 10, 2005. On November 2005, East Star Airlines signed a MOU with Airbus for the purchase of ten A320 family aircraft, plus a firm lease deal with GE Commercial Aviation Service (GECAS) for the lease of a further ten A320 family aircraft.