On August 1, 1999 Brazilian jet, the Embraer ERJ-145, inaugurated its service for LOT Polish Airlines from Warsaw to Zurich.
The new plane carries 48 passengers, has an average speed of 800km/h and is the first of six aircraft ordered by LOT Polish Airlines. This agreement of purchase was signed this past February by Mr. Jan Litwinski, President and CEO of LOT Polish Airlines and Mr. Mauricio Botelho, President of Empresa Brasileira de Aeronautica S.A.
The new jets will serve regional connections previously operated by B-737`s and ATR`s 72. It will enable LOT to increase the number of operations from Warsaw to Frankfurt, Copenhagen, Oslo Munich and Zurich.
In the end of August the second plane will join our fleet with the remaining four aircraft being delivered by the end of September 2000. This over 100 mln US dollar contract also contains the option to purchase six more Embraers. LOT Polish Airlines will pay 15% of the contracted amount, with the remainder being paid off within twelve years.
The new planes would enable LOT Polish Airlines to launch service from such domestic Polish Airports as Poznan, Gdansk and Katowice to European destinations strongly desired by local authorities.
These Brazilian jets are quite popular on the aviation market, especially among the American carriers: Continental Express operates 45 Embraers and American Eagle 32 such planes. They are also very popular in Europe and will soon operate in the fleet of Alitalia and Crossair.
As Mr. Jan Litwinski, the President of LOT Polish Airlines said “We think that Embreaer is an ideal aircraft to add frequencies to certain European routes to the benefit of our passengers”