Vietnam Airlines considers 777X, A380

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Vietnam Airlines is evaluating larger widebody aircraft for its fleet renewal and growth needs, and will likely make a decision by next year.

Speaking to Flightglobal on the sidelines of a SkyTeam event in Bali, its president & CEO Pham Ngoc Minh says the carrier's Boeing 777-200ERs and Airbus A330-200s are its largest types now with a capacity of up to 300 seats.

Its incoming Airbus A350-900s and Boeing 787-9s will replace the 777s and A330s which it will gradually be phased out by end 2018.

"But for a bit higher capacity and 450 seats and beyond, we have to work on it because we don't have this kind of capacity," says Pham.

He adds that the carrier is hence evaluating the Boeing 777X and the Airbus A380.

"The A380 we're considering because we have some routes which are very long and busy such as Ho Chi Minh city to Los Angeles. We're working on a solution and how we can use the right equipment," says Pham.

He would not say how many large widebodies the carrier would require, but adds that a decision will likely be made in the next year.

Flightglobal data shows that Vietnam Airlines has a fleet of 79 aircraft consisting of A321s, A330s, 777s and ATR 72s. It also has 19 787-9s, 10 A350-900s and 13 A321s on order.