Thomson Airways’ tenth Dreamliner touched down at Manchester Airport at 09:10 (UK time) today.
The airline’s Managing Director, John Murphy landed the aircraft after flying 3950 miles across the Atlantic from the Boeing Factory in Charleston, South Carolina.
Its arrival is extra special for the airline, as it is the first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner to enter the Thomson fleet. The 787-9 is six metres longer than the 787-8 Dreamliners and includes 45 more seats, so will carry a total of 345 customers to far flung destinations from Jamaica and Dominican Republic to Mexico.
In preparation for Thomson’s rebrand to TUI in the Autumn 2017, the aircraft arrived in the new TUI livery.
John Murphy, Managing Director of Thomson Airways, said: “We are delighted to welcome the first 787-9 Dreamliner into our fleet. Since we took delivery of our first Dreamliner in May 2013, the aircraft has been a big hit with our customers and we’ve received excellent feedback. We are committed to investing in our fleet to innovate our customers flying experience. Our new bigger Dreamliner will allow even more customers to enjoy the revolutionary benefits this aircraft offers, when traveling to their holiday destination.
This aircraft is key to expanding our long haul programme. We are always looking at new and exciting destinations to offer customers even more holiday choice. For this winter we have introduced holidays to Sri Lanka and next summer St Lucia will also be added to our holiday line-up.
The Dreamliner 787-9 is also a significant milestone for us in our rebrand journey, as the new aircraft has arrived in the new TUI livery. We see this as the perfect opportunity to begin introducing our customers to the TUI brand as we embark on our journey of switching from Thomson at the latter part of 2017.”
Dreamliners are more environmentally friendly than other aircrafts, using 20% less fuel and the 787-9 can travel a further 830 kilometres in the same energy-efficient manner, to enable the airline to continue delivering a sustainable holiday experience in the air. Customers will also be able to enjoy all the state-of-art comfort and wellbeing features on-board from bigger windows and mood lighting to reduced cabin altitude, which minimises the effects of jet-lag.
The airline will be taking delivery of up to four 787-9 Dreamliners before June 2019, so there will be nine Boeing 787-8 and five Boeing 787-9 in the fleet.
Thomson is planning to operate the aircraft on short haul routes, before the 787-9 begins flying its long haul routes. The new aircraft is scheduled to operate its first customer flight from Manchester to Malaga, Spain on 1st July, before it commences its regular Manchester to Montego Bay, Jamaica route on 15th July 2016.