JAL008 took off from Tokyo, Narita and landed at Boston Logan over the weekend where passengers were welcomed by JAL Chairman, Masaru Onishi, JAL Senior Vice President for the Americas, Hiroyuki Hioka, and Massport Director of Aviation, Ed Freni. Lexington Minutemen in traditional uniform were drumming up excitement as customers began arriving for the first flight to Japan accomplishing JAL’s maiden revenue round-trip flights of the super-efficient, GEnx-powered Dreamliner. This was at the same time, the debut of the world’s newest aircraft type in the United States.
“By deploying the 787 Dreamliner on long-haul routes to markets that can garner substantial travel demand such as Boston, JAL is making best use of the aircraft’s long-range capability, appropriate capacity, and its economic performance,” said JAL President Yoshiharu Ueki at the departure gate ceremony of JAL008 in Narita yesterday to celebrate this landmark event for JAL, Boeing, and Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport). “We are very happy to have such strong support from the Boston community, Massport, Boeing, and joint business partner American Airlines, to establish this direct link between Boston and Tokyo never-before available.”
“We are honored to see the 787 Dreamliner begin its first commercial service to the U.S. with the launch of JAL’s Tokyo to Boston route,” said Boeing Japan president Mike Denton, who was on the flight. “The 787 brings new levels of flexibility to airlines in their network development, and this is exactly the kind of long-haul point-to-point route the 787 was designed to fly. Congratulations to JAL and all their passengers participating in this exciting, pioneering flight.”
JAL’s 787 Dreamliner is currently fitted with 42 seats in business, featuring the Executive Class JAL SHELL FLAT NEO seats that are 5 cm (2 inches) wider (than the seats now fitted on JAL’s Boeing 777s) in a 2-2-2 configuration, and 144 in Economy Class with 2 cm (0.8 inches) wider space than current seats and arranged in a 2-4-2 configuration. JAL has on order a total of 45 Boeing 787 Dreamliners.
Some highlights of the revolutionary aircraft include larger windows with electronically dimmable shades, as well as higher ceilings, lower cabin pressure and better humidity for a noticeably more comfortable in-flight experience. JAL’s hospitality is reflected in customer-contact points throughout the cabin and even in the work space for cabin attendants such as the kitchen equipment in the galley. Utilizing the LED lights in the Dreamliner, JAL created an original cabin lighting design to enhance the ambience onboard with a sense of the four seasons in Japan, such as pink hues of cherry blossoms in spring, or sky blue in the summer months of July and August. The lighting also adapts at various timings during the flight, to make the environment more conducive during meal service and for resting or waking up.