FedEx hopes new aircraft will reduce trip costs.

(Bloomberg) — Pilots at FedEx Corp. (NYSE:FDX), owner of the world’s biggest cargo airline, approved a six-year contract that provides a signing bonus, annual increases in hourly pay and more options for health care benefits.

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The agreement was ratified by 57 percent of those voting, Courtney Bland, spokeswoman for the Air Line Pilots Association, said Tuesday. The union represents about 4,000 FedEx employees.

FedEx is banking on lower costs from new airplanes and increased productivity to help offset the expense of the new contract. More fuel-efficient Boeing Co. (NYSE:BA) 767s being added to its fleet through 2016 will reduce trip costs by as much as 30 percent, FedEx has said. The shipping company operated 652 aircraft as of Aug. 31.

The contract takes effect Nov. 2 and runs through October 2021.

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