Air New Zealand’s first scheduled 787-9 Dreamliner


Posted On Dec 18 2019 by

first_imgAir New Zealand’s Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner touched down in Perth today at 17:24 marking the beginning of scheduled commercial 787 passenger services for the airline.  The inaugural 787 service between Auckland and Perth was originally scheduled to commence on October 15th, however, in a rarity for the industry, a dream ‘aircraft familiarisation’ run meant services could commence earlier. Whilst the Dreamliner will continue to operate from today between Perth and Auckland, Air New Zealand will not guarantee the aircraft on the route until October 15th after their second 787 has been delivered.  In true Air New Zealand style, the airline put innovation at the forefront when ordering this aircraft and chose to forgo the standard options available from Boeing, starting with the Economy Cabin.  Kerry Reeves, the airline’s Program Director for Aircraft Programs explains, “The economy seat has been set at a one-inch recline, so that passengers will not feel the need to immediately recline their seat fully. Passengers have the option to recline fully for sleep of course but studies have shown that a small recline will satisfy the majority of passengers, aside from night time.”  Air New Zealand also added more sculptured padding to the seats and modified the head rest to increase the travel up and downwards.Along with  a new in-flight entertainment system, the airline has also done away with the hand held control for the seat back video which is often difficult to get to when fitted into the arm rest and can be accidently activated.  Passengers now have all their controls including light, flight attendant call button, sound level and brightness on the seat back video screen. Passengers can also text the Flight Attendant for food or drinks and get an answer. Air New Zealand has also chosen the 787 to launch its new more “mainstream” Premium Economy. Reeves said the primary reason the new seats had been chosen rather than the hard shell Spaceseats used on the 777-300 was the routes being flown by the Dreamliner. “This aircraft is replacing 767s on [trans-Tasman] and Asian flying,” he said. “And premium economy is either a product that we don’t sell on short haul or in the Asian market, it is a very emerging product. That market doesn’t value the Spaceseat space and experience you get. So therefore we thought we needed to develop something more appropriate to that market.”  The new premium economy seats feature a 41-inch (104cm) pitch, 9-inch (23cm) recline and a seat width of 19.3 inches (49cm). All seats also feature a foot rest.  Those that have been lucky enough to fly in Air New Zealand’s Business Premier will understand why the airline saw no need to make many changes to the  front end of the plane. There has been a few tweaks to the shell around the seats to offer a bit more privacy and of course these seats will also feature the new in-flight entertainment system.  The 787 aircraft features larger windows, more spacious cabin bins, a lower cabin altitude and higher cabin humidity which according to both passengers and crew makes a huge difference in how you feel after a flight. For many flying on this aircraft, jet lag is a thing of the past.   Looking through this aircraft, it’s no surprise that passengers worldwide are choosing to fly with airlines that operate the 787 . It’s cliché and absolutely over used  but the Dreamliner really is “a dream machine”Follow Sharon on twitterlast_img

Last Updated on: December 18th, 2019 at 10:05 pm, by


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