Air Transat (TS, Montréal Trudeau) has signed an agreement with AerCap for the long-term lease of seven A321neo Family jets including two A321neo and five A321neo(LR)s.

The Canadian leisure specialist said in a statement the aircraft would deliver direct from Airbus (AIB, Toulouse Blagnac) between 2020 and 2022 and will replace select A330s whose leases will expire over the period.

"We are continuing our fleet transformation in order to achieve greater efficiency and versatility," Jean-François Lemay, President of Air Transat, said. "With their smaller size, the A321neos will enable us to implement our air strategy, which involves increasing our flight frequencies, expanding our network and strengthening our position in several markets. The goal: continue to provide our customers with comfortable service at the best possible price."

With 199 seats in a two-class configuration, the A321neo will be used for feeder flights and service to the South (short- and medium-haul) while the long-range variant will be deployed to Caribbean Sun and transatlantic destinations.

Air Transat has an existing contract with AerCap for ten A321neo(LR)s which will start delivering from spring 2019 onwards. These aircraft will be used to gradually replace Air Transat's fleet of seven A310-300s, all of which will be retired by late 2020.

Air Transat currently operates seven A310-300s, two A320-200s, two A321-200s, sixteen A330-200s, four A330-300s, and six B737-800s. The Boeing narrowbodies will be withdrawn by 2024 at which time Air Transat will transition into an all-Airbus operation.