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Air New Zealand first airline to take delivery of the Boeing 787-9

Air New Zealand has taken delivery of the world’s first Boeing 787-9 airliner and is flying it from Seattle to Auckland.

More than 1000 Boeing employees joined the airline’s representatives, VIP guests and media to celebrate the handover of the aircraft at the Future of Flight museum near Seattle.

American country music group The Band Perry made a surprise appearance and joined the celebrations.

Air New Zealand’s first 787-9 is in the airline's distinctive black livery and will depart for Auckland, New Zealand, after it has been displayed to international media and travel trade partners.

It will arrive late afternoon Friday 11 July.

Air New Zealand CEO Christopher Luxon says the delivery of the 787-9 is the start of an exciting new era for the airline.

“It's a privilege to be the global launch customer for this aircraft and our team is looking forward to flying it home to New Zealand. The 787-9 is a real game changer and we can’t wait for our customers to experience it," says Mr Luxon.
This aircraft is the first of ten 787-9 Dreamliners to join Air New Zealand's fleet. The aircraft will operate the Auckland - Perth route from 15 October 2014 and to Shanghai and Tokyo later this year.

The 787-9 complements and extends the 787 family. With the fuselage stretched by 6 meters over the 787-8, the 787-9 will fly up to 40 more passengers an additional 450 nautical miles (830 km) with the same exceptional environmental performance - 20% less fuel use and 20% fewer emissions than similarly sized airplanes.

Twenty-six customers from around the world have ordered 409 787-9s, accounting for 40% of all 787 orders.

Another of Air New Zealand’s 787-9s will be displayed by Boeing at the Farnborough International Airshow later this month.

More by Nathan Smith

Comments and questions

I don't like this new colour scheme. Having an all black fuselage just doesn't suit this plane. I hope the remaining 787's are all white with black fern painted on

International routes are competitive but ANZ dumps cramped propellor planes on the captive regional market. It should spend money on the brilliant Embraer short hop E-Jets used by numerous other airlines.

Having jets on regional routes would increase the cost of fares due to requirement of having AVSEC, ATR-72 is a good fit which they have purchased more of.

I'm all for more of anything which saves the toxic Avgas these planes run on. 20-percent is a Biggie. That's worthy of our premier airline.
So how about, Mr Luxon, canning this so-called Smart Approaches lark, which according to your own numbers saves one-percent, yes, that's right, of the amount used on say, a flight to the UK or USA.
That way half the tax and ratepaying residents of the North Shore, Eastern and Central suburbs can get a good night's unbroken slumber and not have pools of incompletely combusted Avgas (becuase of the low altitudes and slow speeds employed) sticking to the outside walls of their bombarded homes?
Experts can now prove the whole gig is using more fuel because 95-percent of the international flights have to do a dog-leg down the West Coast, to the mouth of the Manukau Harbour to connect up to this experimental Airways NZ system.
The new Boeing 9s and anything Boeing to replace the struggling 320s, revving and braking across our neighbourhoods, would mean we could return to legitimate flight paths and sleep better and live longer.
And don't pretend it's an "International Norm NZ needs to conform to".
It's really about greed-hiding-behind-greenwash and devaluing your neighbours -- who are largely your passengers -- like some Third World mogul.