For archrivals, Boeing and Airbus, 2008 has kicked off with a fresh round of orders as China Airlines, Air Europa, TAM and Jeju Air announced fresh aircraft orders or confirmed options.
For Boeing there would have been particular glee regarding one order, as Spanish leisure carrier, Air Europa, which had become the first airline in December 2004 to order the original Airbus A350, switched to the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
Europa announced an order for eight B787-8s, worth $1.3 billion, at list prices, plus options for eight more.
The order had been placed in 2007 and was listed by Boeing as unidentified.
Air Europa selected the Trent 1000 to power its 787s, with an order worth some $560 million, including a TotalCare package, according to Trent manufacturer, Rolls-Royce.
"After further development of the 787 by Boeing, it became clear to our pilots, our fleet planners and our accountants that the 787 would deliver the best possible economics while also offering superior satisfaction for our passengers," MD Maria Jose Hidalgo said.
Airbus, on the other hand, scored elsewhere, securing major contracts in Taiwan and Brazil. China Airlines inked a deal for 14 A350 XWB-900s, plus six options, with deliveries scheduled to begin in 2015. Rolls Royce said the accompanying Trent XWB order and TotalCare services agreement would be worth up to $1.3 billion at list prices.
Brazilian carrier, TAM, firmed its order for 22 A350 XWBs announced last summer and also converted options for four A330-200s and 20 A320s. The orders for these 46 aircraft are worth approximately $9.6 billion at list prices, the airline said. While deliveries for the A350 XWB are scheduled to commence in 2013, the A330s will begin to arrive starting 2010.
TAM currently operates 102 Airbus aircraft, including 12 A330-200s and two A340-500s on its long-haul routes.
South Korean carrier, Jeju Air, confirmed options for five 737-800s, valued at $363 million, which it had announced last month. Jeju will start taking deliveries, beginning 2011, and will also lease an additional 10 737-800s over the next five years.