The new aircraft was set to be delivered in January and March 2014 with 22 business class lie-flat bed seats and 240 economy seats. It is not yet known which routes the new aircraft will be used on.
The Abu Dhabi-based carrier has also converted seven of its previously ordered Airbus A320s to the larger A321.
“As our operations and network continue to grow in scale, we feel the A330-200 is the right fleet type to expand with,” said James Hogan, president and CEO of Etihad. “Our decision to convert seven of our A320s on order into A321s reflects the increasingly strong demand we are seeing across our different routes and we look forward to taking delivery of our first in November 2013.”
Meanwhile Etihad was forced to postpone the launch of its services to Ethiopia after the Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority rejected its application to fly to Addis Ababa. The carrier had been in talks with authorities ahead of its launch on 2 November but has been forced to cancel the launch following the decision. A MOU had previously been signed between Ethiopia and Abu Dhabi’s governments in 2007 to allow flights between the two cities. Ethiopian Airlines had previously operated on the route from July 2008 but cancelled services 12 months after.