Jetstar’s first Boeing 787 Dreamliner is set to be delivered to the low-cost carrier in September.
The news comes as the airline’s first Dreamliner, aircraft number 123 on the Boeing factory line, enters the final assembly phase.
Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said the company was looking forward to introducing the revolutionary aircraft into Jetstar’s fleet.
“The Qantas Group fleet is now the youngest it has been in 20 years and the addition of these ultra fuel efficient 787s will help us deliver an even better standard of travel,” Joyce said.
“What Boeing has achieved with the design of this aircraft, in terms of comfort and economics, is absolutely game-changing for both passengers and airlines. There’s no doubt that it will be worth the wait.
“We are investing more than $100 million in infrastructure to support the Dreamliner including training facilities for our pilots and cabin crew, as well as equipment to maintain the aircraft – plus the jobs needed to support this infrastructure.”
Jetstar Group CEO Jayne Hrdlicka said Jetstar’s first 787 in September would be followed by a further two aircraft joining the fleet by the end of the year.
“Jetstar will be the first airline in Australia and New Zealand, and the first low cost carrier in Asia Pacific, to operate the Boeing 787,” she said. “Our customers are going to love it.
“The Dreamliners will operate to destinations like Honolulu, Phuket and Tokyo which are currently serviced by our A330 aircraft, and will deliver a quieter cabin, better air quality and larger windows.
“Melbourne is the home of Jetstar, and the 787 will be a very important part of our future, so there’s a great symmetry that parts of these aircraft are made locally.”
The Qantas Group has a total of 14 firm orders for the 787-8, to be delivered to Jetstar. A further 50 options and purchase rights for a mix of 787-8s and -9s are available from 2016.
Delivery of the 787-8s to Jetstar will see its existing A330s transferred to Qantas, following a refit of the cabins. This will then enable the progressive retirement of Qantas’ Boeing 767 fleet by mid-2015.
As Hrdlicka said, a number of parts on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner are made in Melbourne.
Boeing Aerostructures Australia produces the moveable trailing edge components of the 787’s trademark swept wings. The trailing edge is a key to the aircraft’s aerodynamics and helps increase lift capacity during take-off and landing.