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Miles flown for stories
2014: 137,829
2013: 330,818

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Epic AvGeek Photo: Air Canada’s First Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner

C-GHPQ, Air Canada's first 787-8 on the ramp at KPAE. Photo - Bernie Leighton

C-GHPQ, Air Canada’s first 787-8 on the ramp at KPAE. Photo – Bernie Leighton

I was up over PAE this morning, going hunting. Look at this wonderful new aircraft for Air Canada. Best looking 787 yet in my opinion.

The Montreal-based airline should be taking delivery of this frame some time next month. 

 

2014 – YVR’s Year of the Dreamliner

HI RES IMAGE (click for larger). JAL's Boeing 787 Dreamliner taking off at Paine Field. Photo by Boeing.

HI RES IMAGE (click for larger). JAL’s Boeing 787 Dreamliner taking off at Paine Field – Photo: Boeing

Last week, Japan Airlines announced that it will begin Boeing 787 service to Vancouver International Airport (YVR) on Monday, February 3, 2014. This will be the first scheduled arrival of a Dreamliner at YVR.

The JAL 787-8 will serve the YVR to Tokyo Narita (NRT) route, and will initially fly once per week on Mondays. Daily service will be in place by March.

We expect to see additional Dreamliner service at YVR this year, most noteably with Air Canada’s introduction of their 787-8 later in the spring. AC’s first of their 37-aircraft order, LN160, is to be registered as C-GHPQ and is currently in Position 2 of the Final Assembly Line at Boeing Everett.

BREAKING: Air Canada Orders up to 109 737 MAX Aircraft

The Boeing 737 MAX 8. Image: Boeing.

The Boeing 737 MAX 8 – Image: Boeing

Today, Air Canada, in a surprising move, has decided to replace their current Airbus narrowbody fleet with the offering from the competition – the Boeing 737 MAX.

They have ordered a total of 61 of the aircraft, with 33 going to the MAX 8 and 23 to the larger MAX 9.  The “up to 109″ part of the transaction comes from 30 purchase rights and 18 options. At list prices, the firm orders would be a transaction of over six billion dollars, but you better believe that the airline made a stellar deal for the planes.

“We are pleased to announce our agreement with Boeing for the purchase of 737 MAX aircraft as part of the ongoing modernization of Air Canada’s fleet,” said Calin Rovinescu, President and CEO of Air Canada. “Renewal of our North American narrowbody fleet with more fuel efficient aircraft is a key element of our ongoing cost transformation program and the enhanced passenger cabin comfort provided by the Boeing MAX will help us to retain Air Canada’s competitive position as the Best Airline in North America. Our narrowbody fleet renewal program is expected to yield significant cost savings. We have estimated that the projected fuel burn and maintenance cost savings on a per seat basis of greater than 20 per cent will generate an estimated CASM reduction of approximately 10 per cent as compared to our existing narrowbody fleet.”

By 2019, Air Canada plans to have an all Boeing long-haul fleet, and a majority Boeing short-to-medium haul fleet. Currently, the airline operates a fleet of 27 Airbus A319s, 36 A320s and 10 A321s.

Continue reading BREAKING: Air Canada Orders up to 109 737 MAX Aircraft

Air Canada’s 787 – Route & Cabin Details Announced

Air Canada Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner - love that wing! Courtesy: Air Canada

Air Canada Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner – love that wing! - Image: Air Canada

Air Canada has just released details of a new cabin design for their soon-to-be-received Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner. The first three aircraft will be delivered to Air Canada in the spring of 2014. The first AC routes to receive the 787 will start on July 1, 2014 from Toronto (YYZ) to Tel Aviv (TLV), and a new Air Canada route from YYZ to Tokyo-Haneda (HND). The Dreamliners will also fly on select domestic Canada and international flights on a “preview” basis as they come into the fleet, which we’ve seen with other new 787 operators.

Not unlike AC’s new 777-300s, the Dreamliners will have three cabins – International Business Class, Premium Economy, and Economy. The 787-8s will have a total of 251 seats (comparable to LOT Polish’s 787s, seating 252, which we featured earlier this year). Air Canada describes the 787′s cabin color palette of slate grey and neutral tones, accented with “Canadian red” and “celeste blue”, as being contemporary and sophisticated.

BONUS – Air Canada’s 787 Seating Chart

The 787′s Business Class isn’t like J-class in the new 777 or older AC planes. The new 787-8 configuration is a “reverse herringbone”, with four-across seating in a 1-2-1 setup, for a total of 20 lie-flat seats.  AC’s older wide-bodies have a “herringbone” Business Class, where the seats face towards the aisle. Instead, the outer pods in the 787 will face the windows, and be angled towards each other in the middle of the cabin. I’m looking forward to seeing this setup; it isn’t easy to look out the window in the current J-class, and it’s challenging to chat with a partner when you’re both in the opposite-facing middle seats. The 787′s window seats might be a bit quieter, too, because your head won’t be up against the outer wall of the fuselage.

Continue reading Air Canada’s 787 – Route & Cabin Details Announced

Air Canada: New Planes, New Seats, New Rules, and More

77W Delivery

Sparkling-new Air Canada 777-300ER C-FIVX at the Boeing Delivery Center, Paine Field, Everett WA. Photo: Bernie Leighton

It’s looking pretty busy at Air Canada (AC) and not just because they’ve launched their new “leisure airline,” rouge.

This summer, AC took delivery of the first two 777-300ERs from their latest five-plane order. When this order is completed, AC will have 17 -300ERs and 6 -200LRs in their international fleet. While AC’s new 777s look standard on the outside, they are very different inside.

Their newest 777s are configured in a new, three-class cabin, seating 458. That’s a huge 30% capacity increase from AC’s older 777-300ERs, which have 349 seats in a two-class arrangement. What all has changed? Obviously we had to take a closer look.

Continue reading Air Canada: New Planes, New Seats, New Rules, and More