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THAI Smile Takes Delivery of its First Airbus A320

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THAI Smile, the new light premium regional sub-brand of Thai Airways International, has taken delivery of its first aircraft, an Airbus A320.

 Seating 174 passengers, the aircraft is powered by IAE V2527-A5 engines.

 The Bangkok-based carrier will start regional operations on 7 July with daily flights to Macau, before flying domestically to Krabi, Chiang Mai, Surat Thani and Phuket.

"We are delighted to take delivery of our brand new Airbus A320,” said Mr. Woranate Laprabang, Managing Director of THAI Smile. “Thanks to the A320’s cabin comfort and operational reliability, THAI Smile will be able to service the market gap between low-cost and full service airlines.”

The aircraft is the first of 11 A320s which will be delivered to THAI Smile by mid-2015. The first six aircraft are being leased from SMBC Aviation Capital.

 SMBC Aviation Capital’s CEO, Peter Barrett, said, “This is our first transaction with THAI Smile, and we look forward to building a close relationship with them in the coming years. The fact that we now own and manage 69 A320s and have a further 45 on order is a clear reflection of the high regard in which we and our customers hold this outstanding aircraft.”

The remaining five aircraft are directly purchased from Airbus and will be equipped with new “Sharklet” wing tip devices, which Airbus claims will deliver up to 3.5% in fuel savings.

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