On November 27th, Air Sial’s first of three Airbus A320-200s began a long delivery flight from Arizona to Pakistan. The aircraft took off from storage facilities at Phoenix Goodyear Airport and began the long journey to Air Sial’s home in Karachi, Pakistan. With the A320’s range limitations, the aircraft’s ferry flight has had to make stops at airports in New Hampshire, Ireland, and Egypt.
From Arizona to Pakistan
Phoenix to Portsmouth. According to data from FlightRadar24.com, on November 27th, the Air Sial Airbus A320-200 departed Phoenix Goodyear Airport (GYR) at 12:29, en route to Karachi, Pakistan (KHI) as flight JTN275. The first of three segments took just over four hours and had the jet land at Portsmouth (PSM) airport in New Hampshire at 18:44.
Portsmouth to Belfast. After a little under two hours on the ground in Portsmouth, the aircraft then made its transatlantic flight over to Belfast International Airport (BFS) in Northern Ireland, departing at 20:15 and arriving the next day (November 28th) at 07:09 for a total flight time of just under six hours. The flight number for this segment was JTN278.
Belfast to Cairo. Spending most of the day in Belfast, the aircraft then departed for Cairo, Egypt, at 20:01, arriving at 03:04 the next day for a flight time of five hours and three minutes. The flight number for this segment was PF7786.
Cairo to Karachi. After two and a half hours on the ground in Cairo, the aircraft took off this morning for its final destination of Karachi at 05:40. Around the time of this article’s publication, the aircraft should be close to arriving at Karachi Jinnah International Airport. The flight number for this segment was also PF7786.
All times listed above are local.
The Airbus A320-200 and the Air Sial fleet
Registered as AP-BOA, data from Airfleets.net shows that the aircraft is a 16-year-old Airbus A320-200, which was previously registered as ZK-OJH. It has previously flown with other airlines, including Air New Zealand and Freedom Air.
This first aircraft is part of a three-A320 lease agreement with major aircraft lessor, AerCap. AerCap chief executive Aengus Kelly made the following statement at the end of 2019 via FlightGlobal:
“With the rapid growth in air traffic in Pakistan as well as air liberalisation, AirSial is well positioned to take advantage of this opportunity.”
Exclusive: First aircraft for new-Pakistani airline, Air Sial, is on it’s way from Goodyear, Arizona to Karachi, Pakistan.
The first of three Airbus A320-232 [AP-BOA, ex JTN275] first heading to Portsmouth as per @flightradar24 below.
— Mohammed Firaas | 🇬🇧🇵🇰✈ (@raisinganchor) November 27, 2020
This is actually Air Sial’s very first aircraft as the airline is a fairly new start-up.The privately-owned airline was initially announced in 2018 but has not yet released an official launch date, which, judging by its website, is coming quite soon. Of course, the delivery of its very first aircraft is a huge step towards starting operations, although many expected the airline to launch in 2019.
Flights will begin with routes between cities such as Karachi, Lahore, and Islamabad. The local airline also has plans to launch international operations at a later stage. It is said to be considering countries such as the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain, and Malaysia.
The airline is headquartered in Sialkot, but it appears that the airline’s jet will be based in Karachi.
For those living or traveling in the region, are you excited to see Air Sial take to the skies? Let us know in the comments.