Air Niugini places order for 2 Boeing 787 Dreamliners

Render of an Air Niugini Boeing 787 in flight.
Image Credit: Boeing

Papua New Guinea’s national flag carrier Air Niugini has placed an order for two Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners to support the growth of its long-haul fleet.

The new fuel-efficient Dreamliners will enable Air Niugini to establish new routes from the Pacific island nation and boost capacity for inbound tourism. 

Growing network in Asia-Pacific region

“Signing this contract with Boeing for the purchase of two modern, widebody 787 Dreamliners will enable Air Niugini to grow its network across Asia, Australia, and New Zealand and fulfill its mission as the premier airline in Papua New Guinea, providing the best air service in the region,” said Gary Seddon, acting CEO of Air Niugini.

More than 85 customers around the world have placed orders for more than 1,600 Dreamliners, making the 787 Dreamliner the fastest-selling widebody airplane in history.

Since entering service in 2011, the 787 family’s fuel efficiency, flexibility and range have enabled airlines to open more than 350 new nonstop routes.

Opening up Port Moresby

“The excellent capability of the 787 allows Air Niugini to open Port Moresby to more destinations, increasing tourism and economic growth in the South Pacific region,” said Erika Pearson, Boeing vice president, Commercial Sales and Marketing, Southeast Asia and Oceania.

“The Dreamliner’s flexibility, outstanding efficiency and unmatched passenger comfort will enable Air Niugini to provide improved long-haul connectivity to the islands.”  

Built with lightweight composite materials and powered by advanced engines, the 787 Dreamliner can fly up to 20% more passengers while reducing fuel use and emissions by 25% compared to the airplanes it replaces. The 787-8’s range reaches up to 13,530 km in a typical two-class configuration.

Boeing has worked with Air Niugini for more than 45 years. The airline operates a domestic network from Port Moresby across Papua New Guinea, as well as international flights across the Asia-Pacific region, including to Australia, Singapore, Solomon Islands and Fiji.

About Air Niugini

Air Niugini is headquartered in Port Moresby and operates a domestic network from Port Moresby to 12 major airports while its subsidiary company, Link PNG, operates routes to minor airports. It also operates international services in Asia, Oceania, and Australia on a weekly basis.

The airline was originally established in November 1973 as the national airline of Papua New Guinea with the government holding 60% of the shares, Ansett (16%), Qantas (12%) and Trans Australia Airlines (TAA) (12%).

It started as an exclusively domestic carrier; however it expanded to offer international services shortly thereafter. In founding the airline, the government aimed to encourage regional development in a country without an extensive road network.

The airline was established using DC-3 and Fokker F27 aircraft. Air Niugini’s current fleet consists of a mix of Boeing 737 and 767 variants, Fokker F70/F100 and Dash 8 aircraft.

It is the largest airline in Papua New Guinea and employs over 2,000 people. To the people of Papua New Guinea, Air Niugini is more than just the nation’s flag carrier – it is a symbol of the country’s progress.

Not only has Air Niugini provided a massive boost to trade and tourism over the years, but it has also helped to connect diverse local communities. Air Niugini celebrates 50 years of operations in 2023. 

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