PARIS, FRANCE — Air France-KLM firmed up a letter of intent signed in December 2021. The Franco-Dutch group announced that it would acquire four Airbus A350F freighter aircraft from the European aircraft manufacturer with purchase rights of an additional four aircraft of the same type.

The planes will be operated by Air France, and be based at the airline's 14,000 square meters cargo terminal at the Paris-Charles de Gaulle International. With the arrival of new freighters, Air France’s cargo capacity will significantly increase. French carrier's current freighter fleet consists of two Boeing 777F.

Compared to previous generation aircraft, the A350F offers 11% more volume while enabling a 15% reduction in fuel burn and CO2 emissions, notably thanks to its reduced weight and efficient Rolls Royce engines. It will therefore play a key role in shaping the future of Air France-KLM as a major player in sustainable air cargo transportation.

With this agreement, Air France-KLM will be among the launch operators of the A350F full freighter.

This order comes with full substitution rights to Airbus A350 passenger aircraft, which constitute the new flagship of Air France’s long-haul fleet. The airline currently operates 15 of the 38 aircraft of the type on order.

As of December 31, 2021, Air France-KLM operated a fleet of 505 aircraft to over 300 destinations worldwide.

“This order embodies Air France-KLM’s determination to strengthen its position in the buoyant cargo business”,

said Benjamin Smith, CEO of Air France-KLM.

“The Airbus A350 passenger version has been instrumental to the improvement of our economic and environmental performance while proving to be a passenger’s favorite. We are thrilled to be among the launch customers of its freighter version, which will significantly increase our capacity and give us the means to continue to provide the best service to our customers around the world,” Smith added.