Kazakhstan's flagship airplane, Air Astana, took delivery of the first of two E190s it had ordered through a lease agreement with Jetscape, Inc. at a ceremony at Embraer's factory in São José dos Campos last week. The airplane has options for additional E190s.
This is the first time Embraer E-Jets will be flow by a customer from Central Asia. Embraer has been steadily adding new operators east of Europe. Montenegro Airlines and Ukrainian carriers Dniproavia and Windrose Aviation have ordered or are already flying the E190 and E195.
Air Astana's E190s are configured with 9 business class and 88 economy class seats. The airplane will deploy the aircraft on both domestic and international routes from its hub in Almaty. Air Astana will replace its current Fokker 50 fleet with the new E190s and also complement existing frequencies on cities served by the carrier's A319/A320 jets. Staring this summer, the E190s will be flying to Astana, Pavlodar, Karaganda, Tashkent, Dushanbe, Bishkek and Yekaterinburg.
Kazakhstan has emerged as a natural geographic air transportation hub given its central location in Asia. Air Astana's east-west network stretches from London frequency and adding cities in countries around Kazakhstan and is forecasting strong traffic growth from markets in Russia.
The E190 is configured with 9 Business Class and 88 Economy Class seats.