Sri Lanka airline ups business class with flatbeds

CEAT Kelani Holdings Managing Director Ravi Dadlani (right) and Lanka Ashok Leyland CEO Umesh Gautham exchange the OEM agreement

Dec 08, 2011 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s state-run SriLankan Airlines has started a 15 million US dollar upgrade of its long-haul business class product with flatbeds and personalized entertainment system, officials said. The loss-making state carrier is to get a 100 million dollar injection from tax payers this year. The airline is hoping to break-even by 2014.

“We are modernizing the fleet and are also upgrading the product,” SriLankan Airlines chief executive Kapila Chandrasena said.

“We feel we can attract more and more people to travel on Sri Lankan.”

A 30-year war ended in 2009 resulting in a tourism boom and Sri Lanka is chasing upmarket tourists.

Sri Lankan has a fleet of 19 large airliners made up of seven Airbus A320s, six A340s and and two float planes.

Sri Lankan rolled out its first A330 upgraded with upgraded with flatbeds, a new inflight entertainment system and an interior décor scheme reflecting a Sri Lanka theme on Thursday.

Over the next six months the airline will upgrade most of its A330s and some A340s with flatbeds, head of commercial GT Jayaseelan said.

Two or three older A340s are likely to be replaced, perhaps with Boeing 777s.

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