MIAMI — Air Canada held an open house in Vancouver yesterday to offer a close-up look of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner it is using for flights to Shanghai. The Canadian flag carrier offered attendees a peek at its new international product that includes three cabins of service and a new Premium Economy cabin. Air Canada has firm orders for 37 Dreamliners.
Air Canada will be flying the 787 on more Asia routes out of its Vancouver hub, including Beijing in February and Seoul in March. The Vancouver-Shanghai was recently upgraded to Dreamliner service, and Vancouver-Tokyo/Narita to be converted next month.
The carrier will begin converting all 25 of its Boeing 777-300ER and 777-200LR aircraft to 787 Dreamliner seating standards starting next year, said Benjamin Smith, president of Air Canada’s passenger airlines.
The Dreamliner’s three cabins feature ergonomic seating and enhanced definition intuitive touch personal entertainment screens. The International Business Class cabin has 20 executive pods with 180-degree lie-flat seats in a 1-2-1 configuration guaranteeing passengers direct aisle access.
Premium Economy has 21 seats in a 2-3-2 configuration and wider seating with more personal space, legroom and recline, premium meals, a free bar service and priority check-in and baggage delivery at the airport. Economy has 210 slimline seats in a 3-3-3 configuration that’s similar to Air Canada’s current cabin.
Air Canada will take delivery of six 787s by the end of the year, with all 37 aircraft scheduled to be delivered by the end of 2019. After the deliveries are completed, the airline will have 15 787-8s and 22 787-9s. The Dreamliners are replacing older Boeing 767s, which are being transferred to Air Canada’s Rouge subsidiary.