Skip to main content

Boeing photo of Air Canada's first Boeing 787 Dreamliner taking off on first test flight, April 25, 2014.Tim Stake

Air Canada will add Beijing and Seoul to its list of destinations served by the Boeing 787 Dreamliner from Vancouver as the carrier converts key international routes to the new aircraft.

The existing Vancouver-Beijing service will switch over to the Boeing 787 in February, and then the Vancouver-Seoul route will get the new plane in March.

Canada's largest airline is scheduled to make the announcement Wednesday at Vancouver International Airport, where the company will have a Dreamliner on display at its hangar.

New Dreamliner aircraft that typically seat 251 passengers are slated to replace Air Canada's aging Boeing 767s, which have 191 seats.

Air Canada introduced the long-range Dreamliner, made primarily of composite materials, into its fleet in July on a new route between Toronto and Tokyo's Haneda Airport.

Air Canada deployed the Dreamliner on the Vancouver-Shanghai route last month, marking the company's 787 commercial debut at Vancouver International Airport. The carrier is also set to convert its service between Vancouver and Tokyo's Narita International Airport to the Dreamliner in mid-December.

The Montreal-based carrier has 37 Boeing 787s on order, with six of the planes to be in the fleet by the end of 2014 and final deliveries slated for 2019, said Ben Smith, Air Canada's president of passenger airlines.

The new wide-body jets are 20 per cent more fuel efficient than the 767 models that they are replacing. The 767s are being redeployed to the airline's Rouge leisure operation.

There are 251 seats on Air Canada's Dreamliner – 210 in economy, 21 in premium economy and 20 in business class.

Industry analysts note that the addition of premium economy will help boost the airline's revenue by attracting budget-minded corporate travellers looking for an upgrade on long flights without having to book business class.

Report an error

Editorial code of conduct

Tickers mentioned in this story