CityJet might accelerate Avro RJ85 retirement

Former CityJet Avro RJ85 EI-RJC

Former CityJet Avro RJ85 EI-RJC is now stored at Cranfield (Alistair Henderson)

After deciding earlier this year to keep its Avro RJ85s in service longer than planned, Irish airline CityJet is now considering accelerating their retirement. In May, CityJet executive chairman and founder Pat Byrne told the Sunday Independent that he expected to continue using the RJ85s until about 2021. In a recent interview with CAPA, however, Mr Byrne indicated the type might be retired by 2019 or 2020, with 2019 being more likely. The airline recently withdrew RJ85 EI-RJC (msn E2333) and returned her off-lease. Three more RJ85s are to be retired by the end of the year. Certification of the Sukhoi SuperJet for operations at London City, which Mr Byrne hopes will be secured by the end of 2019, is a critical factor in the timing of the RJ85’s retirement. CityJet currently operates into London City from Dublin on its own behalf, and from Amsterdam on behalf of KLM CityHopper.

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