Earlier this week, JAL (Japan Airlines) announced that it ordered four Boeing 787-8s on top of its existing 787 orders. The airline plans to use the new aircraft on domestic routes. The order is part of JAL’s preparation for the upcoming 2020 Tokyo Olympics, and the airline plans to enter the aircraft into domestic service starting in 2019.
As of right now, JAL is planning to use the aircraft on the Tokyo Haneda to Osaka Itami route, as well as other routes out of Osaka Itami.
Japan Airlines 787 Dreamliner Fleet
Japan Airlines is the second largest operator of Boeing 787s, with All Nippon Airways being the largest one. In total, Japan Airlines has 29 787-8s and 20 787-9s in service or on order including the latest order.
Currently, JAL operates 34 Boeing 787s including 25 of the shorter “-8” version and 9 of the longer “-9” version. It is expecting delivery of its tenth 787-9, JA870J, in the next couple of days. The existing JAL 787-8s as well as all its 787-9s are used on international flights.
Japan Airlines 787 Seating Configurations
The 787-8s come in three configurations. One of them – used on longer routes – features staggered lie-flat business class seats, as well as premium economy and economy classes. The other two feature angle-flat seats in business class and lack premium economy – those are used on shorter regional routes.
The 787-9s come in two configurations – both of them featuring lie-flat seats in business class, and also offering premium economy. The difference between the configurations – besides the capacity – is that one features staggered business class seats while the other offers reverse herringbone seats.
As for the upcoming domestic 787s, their configuration is not known yet.
787s on Domestic Routes in Japan
Given that currently, only ANA operates Dreamliners (both 787-8s and 787-9s) on domestic routes within Japan, it is nice to see JAL plan to do so as well.
Combined with the fact that JAL is also planning to introduce Airbus A350-900 to domestic routes ahead of the Olympics, both domestic travelers as well as spotters have something to look forward to.