Qantas Boeing 787 Dreamliner

  • Qantas took delivery of its first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner last week.
  • It’s one of eight planes Qantas will use on flights between Australia and destinations in the US and Europe.
  • Next year, the Dreamliner will be used for non-stop flights between Perth, Western Australia, and London.
  • Business Insider went along for a portion of the plane’s delivery flight from the Boeing factory in Everett, Washington to Honolulu, Hawaii. 

Last week, Qantas took delivery of its first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. It’s the first new aircraft type introduced to the Qantas fleet in a decade and is destined to connect Australia and the UK with non-stop flying.

For Qantas, the significance of the new plane cannot be understated.

“One of the big advantages of the Dreamliner is that it gives us a range of destinations we couldn’t have done before,” CEO Alan Joyce told Business Insider in an interview. “It gives you better economics because it’s 20% more fuel efficient and with a lot lower maintenance cost given the new technology. That means there are routes we could have done before with distance, but couldn’t do economically that now come onto the radar screen.”

“For Qantas, it also starts overcoming the tyranny of distance we have,” Joyce added.

Qantas also held a contest that allowed members of the public to submit names for the new plane. In the end, the name Great Southern Land was selected. It was chosen in honor of the 80s rock anthem of the same name by the band Icehouse which is about the vastness and the beauty of the Australian landscape.

In total, Qantas will take delivery of eight Dreamliners by the end of next year. Four of these planes, including Great Southern Land, will help launch Qantas’ new non-stop service from Perth, Western Austrailia to London in next Spring.

Boeing turned the plane over to Qantas at its Everett Delivery Center outside of Seattle, Washington.

As part of the festivities, Qantas allowed a group of journalists to experience the jet’s delivery flight to company headquarters in Sydney alongside executives and dignitaries. Normally, delivery flights are fairly humdrum with only pilots and airline staff involved. However, this was a special occasion for Qantas, so the airline decided to make it a big event. 

Naturally, Business Insider was there. Here’s how it went.

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Here it is. The first Boeing 787 Dreamliner to enter the Qantas fleet.

As we arrive at the terminal, the Dreamliner is being loaded with food and fuel.

However, this isn’t just any airport. It’s Boeing’s delivery center in Everett, Washington. There is where airlines, governments, and the insanely wealthy pick up the wide-body Boeing jets they ordered.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider