Azores Airlines (S4, Ponta Delgada) has taken delivery of its first A321-200neo(LR) following the arrival of CS-TSH (msn 8796) in Lisbon on Tuesday, July 9.

The Azorian carrier is expecting four of the type as part of a larger commitment for six A321neo Family jets from Air Lease Corporation. Thus far, it has taken delivery of the two standard variant A321neo. The remaining three LRs are due through 2020.

Parent firm Grupo SATA has shifted its subsidiary's fleet to an all-narrowbody make-up given its only widebody jet - A330-200 CS-TRY (msn 970) - last saw commercial service in November last year. Flightradar24 ADS-B data shows it was ferried to Lourdes/Tarbes in early June for storage.

According to internal company correspondence seen by the Lisbon daily newspaper Diário de Notícias, SATA management said simply by withdrawing the jet from service, they had managed to cut its operational costs by 50%.

"The operating impact of the A330 in 2018 (with the plane to fly and with sufficient crews) was negative to the tune of EUR8 million euro (USD8.91 million). The Airbus A330 has since been withdrawn and, given the current circumstances, has resulted in our annual losses having been halved on the year previous," it said.

In its FY2018 annual report, Grupo SATA said it needed to find options to make the A330 profitable given it had cost the firm millions in maintenance costs in 2018 alone.

According to the ch-aviation fleets advanced module, Hi Fly has been tasked with remarketing the 10-year-old aircraft.

Azores Airlines also operates three A320ceo alongside summer ACMI aircraft in the form of two A340-300s (wet-leased from Hi-Fly and Hi Fly Malta) and one B767-300(ER) (wet-leased from euroAtlantic Airways).

In terms of network, Azores Airlines plies routes connecting the Azorian archipelago with North America as well as Western Europe.