Meant for lower-capacity long-haul flying, where does Kuwait Airways fly its A330-800s?
Kuwait Airways is the largest operator of the rare Airbus A330-800 with a total of just four airframes. For those unaware, the shorter A330neo variant, has been an extremely poor seller for Airbus so far, and its unclear whether orders will actually pick up in the future. Having had its first A330-800 delivered a little over two years ago, where is Kuwait Airways flying these jets?
Four aircraft, three regular destinations
The four A330-800s delivered to Kuwait Airways are registered as follows:
- 9K-APF (MSN 1964)
- 9K-APG (MSN 1969)
- 9K-APH (MSN 2005)
- 9K-API (MSN 2016)
According to flight schedule data from FlightRadar24.com, it appears that there are three regular destinations that see service with the A330-800 out of the airline’s home base at Kuwait International Airport (KWI).
Those three destinations are:
- Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG) – 4,404 km/2736 miles
- Casablanca Mohammed V International Airport (CMN) – 5,237 km/3254 miles
- and Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KUL) – 6,381 km/3965 miles
It would appear that, for these three destinations, the A330-800 is the aircraft of choice for regular service. From time to time, the A330-200 is deployed instead, but this doesn’t appear to be too seldom.
Being a relatively small airline with just 33 aircraft, it would seem that Kuwait Airways is making the most of its size and exercising its flexibility and agility. Indeed, it would appear that the A330-800 is deployed across its network as demand requires, as we see the widebody appear as seemingly one-off services all over the airline’s network. Some routes will most often utilize an Airbus A320neo, and the A330-800 will appear once over the course of the week or once within the span of two weeks. In other cases, the A330-200 will be the dominant type used on a route, and the -800 will appear sporadically.
Nonetheless, here is a non-exhaustive list of destinations that have seen irregular service from Kuwait Airways’ A330-800s:
- Amman (AMM)
- Amsterdam (AMS)
- Beirut (BEY)
- Begaluru (BLR)
- Cairo (CAI)
- Cochin (COK)
- Delhi (DEL)
- Doha (DOH)
- Dubai (DXB)
- Frankfurt (FRA)
- Islamabad (ISB)
- Istanbul (IST & SAW)
- Izmir (ADB)
- Jeddah (JED)
- Kathmandu (KTM)
- Lahore (LHE)
- Milan (MXP)
Given its size and range, the A330-800 is best suited for flying long-haul missions where demand is less than what Kuwait Airways’ Boeing 777-300ERs could offer. However, from our list of cities, it’s clear that the airline is happy to use it on short-haul flights that occasionally see higher demand than what the A320neo can satisfy.
Photo: Kuwait Airways
The configuration of Kuwait Airways’ A330-800s
Speaking of demand and accommodating the right amount of passengers, the A330-800s operated by Kuwait Airways are fitted with a two-class configuration with 32 lie-flat business class seats with 203 seats in the standard economy class cabin.
What do you think of the destinations served by Kuwait Airways’ A330-800s? Let us know by leaving a comment!
Sources: Planespotters.net, FlightRadar24.com