LAN Airlines has signed an agreement with Boeing to accelerate the delivery of 10 Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners and will now become the first airline in the western hemisphere to take delivery of the new airliner type.
Delivery of LAN’s first 787 was previously scheduled for 2014, but now the carrier expects to start receiving its 787s in the first half of 2011.
The 10 aircraft are part of an order for 26 Boeing 787s placed by LAN Airlines on November 5, 2007, the deal calling for the airline to take delivery of all 26 between 2014 and 2019. In addition, LAN has agreed deals to take six more 787-9s from International Lease Finance Corporation. When LAN placed its 787 order ― the largest to date by a Latin American carrier ― Boeing revealed LAN had also contracted to order two Boeing 777F freighters directly from Boeing and take another two on lease from GE Commercial Aviation Services.
The Boeing 787-8 first flew in December 2009 and is expected to begin commercial operations in the fourth quarter of 2010. It will seat approximately 250 passengers. LAN says the 787 will provide a unique in-flight experience for passengers as a result of “innovative technological advances featured inside the aircraft cabin”.
LAN says its Dreamliners will assist in the renewal and growth of its long-haul fleet, allowing LAN Airlines and its subsidiaries to serve additional international destinations, improving connectivity between Latin America, Europe and the United States.
“The incorporation of the Boeing 787 ensures the company’s sustainable growth while preserving the environment and incorporating state-of-the-art technology to deliver the best travel experience for LAN’s passengers,” says Enrique Cueto, LAN’s chief executive officer. “LAN looks forward to incorporating this new generation of aircraft in the first half of 2011.”