Air Canada will expand use of its new Boeing 787 Dreamliner fleet from Vancouver International Airport in early 2015, introducing the type on its routes to Beijing and Seoul from the British Columbia city.
Montréal-based Air Canada recently introduced the Boeing 787 on its Vancouver-Shanghai route and in December will switch to the Dreamliner for its Vancouver-Tokyo Narita service.
Air Canada will introduce the Boeing 787 on its Vancouver-Beijing route in February and its Vancouver-Seoul route in March.
To date the airline has only taken delivery of examples of the Boeing 787-8, the first Dreamliner model to enter service. It has a total of 15 787-8s on order, five of which are now in service and with a sixth due for delivery before the end of the year.
Air Canada is using the model to replace Boeing 767-300ER widebodies in its fleet. It is then transferring these older widebodies to its lower-cost, leisure-route unit Air Canada rouge.
The first service Air Canada began operating with the Boeing 787-8 was its Toronto-Tokyo Haneda route, the carrier introducing the 787 on this long-distance transpacific flight in July.
In August, Air Canada began operating Boeing 787-8s on its Toronto-Tel Aviv route.
Air Canada also has 22 Boeing 787-9 widebodies on firm order and deliveries of these aircraft are due to begin in 2015.
All 37 Dreamliners ordered by Air Canada are due to enter service with the carrier by 2019.
“Customer feedback on our new International Business Class, Premium Economy and Economy product standard debuted on the 787 Dreamliner has been extremely positive,” Benjamin Smith, president, passenger airlines said on November 19 while in Vancouver to present the newest addition to Air Canada’s international fleet to clients and business partners.
“The choice of three cabins of state-of-the-art seating, as well as enhanced cabin comfort and next-generation entertainment systems are a big hit with customers,” added Smith.
“Our new international product standard is being introduced with the arrival of 787 Dreamliner aircraft and we look forward to offering more customers the very best in comfort and amenities as we begin the conversion later next year of all 25 of our Boeing 777-300ER and 777-200LR aircraft to our 787 Dreamliner seating standards,” said Smith.
Air Canada operates each of its Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners with three-class cabins seating a total of 251 passengers.
Its International Business Class cabin in the 787-8 contains 20 Executive pods. These are 180-degree lie-flat seats, arranged in a 1-2-1 row configuration guaranteeing direct aisle access.
Air Canada’s 787-8 Premium Economy cabin has 21 seats, in a 2-3-2 configuration. The Economy cabin has 210 slimline seats, in a 3-3-3 configuration.