MIAMI — Boeing and EVA Airways have finalized today the largest single commercial airplane purchase in the history of Taiwan Aviation, comprising 18 firm orders for the 787-10 plus six options, and two 777-300ER (extended-range) aircraft, valued at more than US$ 8 billion at current list prices, joining All Nippon Airways (ANA) and Singapore Airlines as future operators of the variant in Asia. Eva becomes one of the few carriers, along with mainline Singapore, to have only ordered the stretch -10 variant.

“EVA participated in development of the Boeing 777-300ER and became a launch customer in 2005,” said EVA President Austin Cheng. “From that first delivery through today, we operate 22 of these high-performance long-haul aircraft.”

Chen emphasized that the future of the airline industry will rely on fuel efficiency and cabin products. Two weeks ago, the airline took delivery of its 22nd triple seven, and relaunched its corporate image to give the airline a facelift to its current product portfolio.

EVA will take advantage of the Dreamliner to launch new long, thin routes to Europe, Australia, and New Zealand, where the demand is not enough for the 777 fleet. “The new Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner’s high fuel efficiency and long-range flying capabilities meets these requirements and our operational needs. These planes will support our growth well into the future.” Chen said.

EVA Airways continues to modernize its long-haul fleet to replace aging aircraft and plans to grow its fleet to more than 100 units by 2020. Currently operates a mixed Airbus and Boeing fleet and with today’s order, the airline’s backlog will increase to 43 airplanes, which includes six Airbus A321, fourteen Boeing 777-300ERs, five 777 Freighters and eighteen 787-10s.

While not as well known outside the region as some of its competitors, the Taiwanese carrier has differentiated itself with planes featuring the iconic Japanese cartoon character Hello Kitty. The Hello Kitty theme extends beyond the colorful paint on the outside of the aircraft and into the cabin and inflight service for a fun and playful experience.