Taiwan-based carrier China Airlines has announced that it will exercise the option to purchase eight Boeing 787-9 passenger aircraft to be delivered from 2026 onwards.
With burgeoning air travel demand continuing in the post-Covid era, the new aircraft are to be assigned by the airline to regional, Oceania and long-haul routes.
The option exercise will be finalized with Boeing in the near future.
China Airlines had previously decided on the firm purchase of 16 Boeing 787-9 passenger aircraft fitted with the General Electric GEnx engine back in August 2022 with deliveries to commence in 2025.
Boeing had announced the finalisation of the landmark deal for up to 24 Dreamliners for China Airlines as the carrier looks towards the future of its fleet modernisation.
At the time the carrier discussed options for the eight additional aircraft, bringing the total size of the 787 fleet to 24 aircraft all to be delivered by 2028.
China Airlines had previously introduced brand new fleets of the 777-300ER, A350-900 and A321neo and 787 aircraft. The next-generation fleets have been dispatched on long-haul, medium-haul and short-haul regional routes to boost the airline’s competitiveness.
The airline is also in the midst of an aggressive fleet revitalization program aimed at improving operational efficiency and traveler service.
About the Boeing 787-9
The Boeing 787-9 passenger aircraft is the aircraft maker’s next-generation flagship product. The China Airlines 787-9 passenger aircraft are to be configured for three cabin classes, namely Premium Business, Premium Economy, and Economy.
The advanced cabin product design combined with the more comfortable cabin pressure and humidity of the 787 will provide travelers with a whole new experience.
The 787-9 aircraft boasts exceptional cargo capacity as well. Up to 36 containers can be loaded into the belly hold giving a major boost to China Airlines’ cargo capacity.
The fuselage of the 787-9 passenger aircraft incorporates next-generational composites and metal alloys. Outstanding fuel efficiency means 20% lower fuel consumption and carbon emissions compared to the previous generation of passenger aircraft.
Aircraft noise footprint is also reduced by up to 60% to lessen environmental impact. China Airlines will continue to employ the Sustainable Aviation Fuel policy, previously implemented for the new A350 and A321neo aircraft ferry flights to Taiwan, to conserve energy, cut carbon emissions, and realize the goal of Net Zero by 2050.
The exercise of the option to acquire a further eight aircraft perhaps comes as the icing on the cake for the US aircraft manufacturer.
Boeing have locked away several bulk purchase orders now for both its 787 and 737 family aircraft. The raft of bulk orders has seen Boeing plan for a ramp up the production output on both aircraft lines, commencing this year.
Perhaps the exercise of this option for eight additional Dreamliner’s by the Taiwanese-based carrier shows the confidence in both the aggressive market rebound and the capabilities of the aircraft.
Speaking at the time of the original purchase order in August 2022, China Airlines Chairman Hsieh Su-Chien had stated: “We are excited to introduce the 787-9 Dreamliner into our operations as we continue to upgrade our fleet with more modern, fuel-efficient airplanes. “
Adding the state-of-the-art 787 will help us reduce carbon emissions, while also providing our customers with unmatched levels of comfort.”
“Our continuous investment in fleet modernization is the cornerstone of our sustainability efforts. The 787’s best-in-class efficiency and low operating costs will allow us to expand our network for years to come.”