British Airways on Wednesday took delivery of its first Boeing 787-9. Flying from Seattle, the aircraft operating as flight BA9158, touched down at its new home after 8 hours and 45 minutes. It is the first of twentytwo 787-9s the airline is set to receive from Boeing.
Mitch Preston, British Airways’ flight technical manager for the Boeing 787 fleet and the pilot who flew the aircraft to Heathrow, said: “It’s always a privilege to be the first pilot to fly an aircraft on its delivery flight. I was lucky enough to bring our first 787-8 to Heathrow in 2013 too.”
The Boeing 787-9 features British Airways’ relaunched First Class product designed by Forpeople. The suites use new colors and material finishes, intended to “enhance the robustness and build quality” according to BA creative director Richard Stevens.
The plane is 20 feet longer than its 787-8 with the cabin divided into four sections: First Class (8 seats), Business Class (42 seats), Premium Economy (39) and Economy (127) for a total seating of 216.
The aircraft will begin service with the flight to Delhi on October 25, followed by Abu Dhabi and Muscat from Nov. 5, 2015. Other cities to be served by the 787-9 include Kuala Lumpur, Austin and San Jose, California.
The technologically advanced 787 has a pressurization system which operates at an equivalent altitude of 6,000 feet, 2,000 feet lower than most aircraft, so that passengers arrive feeling more refreshed.
British Airways will eventually operate a total of 42 787s aircraft which are to become the airline’s mainstay.