SITA today announced its selection by Air Arabia - the Middle East’s and North Africa’s first and largest low cost carrier - to provide air-ground communications including data link services for the airline’s expanding fleet and network of 59 destinations.
This five-year deal is for SITA’s AIRCOM data link services for the existing fleet of 21 Airbus A320s, and the 44 aircraft on order which are due to be operational by the end of 2012. It includes basic Aircraft Communication Addressing and Reporting System (ACARS) services.
SITA AIRCOM will be used to support multiple airline functions such as flight operations, engineering, and administration. It will automate processes which will ensure reduced aircraft turn-around times, the pre-emptive detection of equipment failures and an overall improvement in operational staff reaction times.
Hani El Assaad, SITA Regional Vice-President, Middle East and Turkey, said: “Air Arabia is a real success story and SITA AIRCOM will provide enhanced aircraft communications to support their expansion in the years to come. SITA’s voice and data service is the most reliable VHF and satellite service available today so Air Arabia knows can be confident that their communication services will be fully met.”
SITA’s network of ground stations has developed steadily since 1984, and currently includes more than 1,100 stations in more than 160 countries. As the air transport communications specialist, SITA facilitates the exchange of more than one million ACARS messages per day and supports over 180 contracted customer airlines with more than 10,500 individual aircraft in routine airline operation.
Air Arabia, which posted a net profit of AED 425 million in 2009, has been named "Low-Cost Carrier of the Year" by the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA) at the Aviation Outlook Asia 2009 congress in Beijing and also at the Doha Aviation Summit 2009. The airline was also ranked the world’s number one LCC for 2009 in the Top Performing Companies (TPC) study by Aviation Week.