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Air Canada Orders 26 Extra-Long-Range Airbus A321neo Aircraft

Daniel Ross's image
Daniel Ross
Daniel Ross's image

Daniel Ross

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Daniel has loved aviation and travel his entire life. He earned a Master of Science in Air Transport Management and has written about travel and aviation in publications like Simple Flying, The Points...

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Air Canada has officially gotten on board with the long-range, narrow-body aircraft trend.

The Canadian flag carrier has ordered 26 of Airbus’ extra-long-range Airbus A321neo aircraft (also known as the A321XLR) that have the capability to serve all North American routes and to cross the Atlantic.

“Air Canada is committed to further strengthening its market-leading position, especially through investments in new technology,” said Michael Rousseau, President and Chief Executive Officer at Air Canada. “The Acquisition of the state-of-the-art Airbus A321XLR is an important element of this strategy and will drive our core priorities of elevating the customer experience, advancing our environmental goals, network expansion, and increasing our overall cost efficiency.”

Switching out older and less efficient wide-body aircraft for newer and more efficient narrow-body aircraft is a move that is taking over the aviation industry as many airlines view these aircraft as a way to maximize profit and reduce carbon emissions.

Here are all the details about Air Canada’s new jets.

The Airbus A321XLR Will Join Air Canada’s Fleet Soon

Air Canada expects to take delivery of its new XLRs over the course of 3 years with the first aircraft due to be turned over to the airline in the first quarter of 2024.

These jets will have a total of 182 seats in business and economy class.

The pointy part of the plane will feature 14 lie-flat Air Canada Signature Class seats — similar to those you’d find on international flights operated by its wide-body jets.

Air Canada Business Class
Passengers on some transborder flights between Canada and the U.S. can expect to see a scaled-down version of this Air Canada Signature product on its new Airbus A321XLR aircraft from 2024. Image Credit: Air Canada

Hot Tip: Learn about all the best strategies for redeeming your Air Canada Aeroplan points for maximum value.

The single-aisle A321XLRs are likely to operate some of Air Canada’s transborder routes on which it often operates a mixture of wide-body Airbus and Boeing aircraft, including:

  • Toronto (YYZ) to Los Angeles (LAX)  
  • Toronto (YYZ) to San Francisco (SFO)
  • Vancouver (YVR) to Newark (EWR)   

As is often the case when ordering new aircraft, 20 of Air Canada’s new deliveries will be leased, while 6 will be directly acquired from Airbus through a purchase agreement.

As a condition of that purchase agreement, Air Canada will have the right to purchase an additional 14 aircraft through 2030, meaning this could just be the start of a complete fleet overhaul.

Final Thoughts

Air Canada is joining the ultra-long-range narrow-body club.

The first of its swanky new jets, capable of crossing continents and oceans, is expected to be delivered sometime in early 2024.

We’ll be sure to update this story once more information regarding the onboard product and the routes the jets will operate is released.

Daniel Ross's image

About Daniel Ross

Daniel has loved aviation and travel his entire life. He earned a Master of Science in Air Transport Management and has written about travel and aviation in publications like Simple Flying, The Points Guy, and more.

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