South Korean airline Air Premia has agreed to purchase five Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft. The move is part of the airline’s plans to have a strong Boeing 787-9 fleet when it starts operations.
Earlier this year, the start-up airline said that it had signed for a lease of three 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft from Air Lease Corporation. On 29th October 2019, Boeing released a statement announcing that the airline had agreed to buy a further five aircraft. This brings the total confirmed aircraft in Air Premia’s fleet to eight.
In Boeing’s statement, CEO of Air Premia Peter Sim said the following:
“With the 787-9’s superior fuel efficiency and range capabilities, this investment fits perfectly with our unique business model and will position Air Premia for sustainable long-term growth.”
The deal was valued at $1.4 billion and means that Air Premia has now reached the halfway point in kitting out its fleet. In February this year, the airline released a statement saying that it would add 10 Boeing 787-9 to its single-aircraft type fleet. It expected the first three to be added in 2020 and the rest to follow in pairs every year. Therefore it will have a full fleet of 10 aircraft within the next five years.
This new agreement holds Air Premia at its word. Now, it’s already managed to secure 80% of its fleet goal.
In a press release from April this year, the start-up said that it was expecting its first aircraft in July 2020. The next will arrive in September 2020 and the third in November 2020. Boeing, however, was unable to provide exact delivery schedules.
Why has Air Premia chosen the 787-9 Dreamliner?
In the press release from Boeing, Sim went on to say that the 787-9 Dreamliner was helping the airline to achieve the “most fuel efficient fleet”.
The Senior Vice President of Commercial Sales and Marketing at Boeing backed this up. Ihssane Mounir called the aircraft a “perfect fit” for the airline. He said:
“The super-efficient 787-9 is a perfect fit for this new hybrid airline. The market-leading economics and capabilities of the Dreamliner will enable Air Premia to offer the best-in-class service to its customers at competitive fares.”
Boeing says that its 787-9 is configured to reduce fuel consumption by 20-25% in comparison to former models. This has resulted in airline savings of $51.5 billion in fuel and allowed over 235 direct routes to open.
It goes without saying that this aircraft is an exceptional choice for the airline.
Air Premia has previously spoken highly of the 787-9 Dreamliner. The airline expects the aircraft will offer excellent comfort alongside reasonably priced fares and serve Air Premia’s long-haul route network well. It plans for long haul routes to begin in 2021. Air Premia will start with routes in Asia and then expand to San Jose and Los Angeles.
Who are Air Premia?
Air Premier obtained its Air Carrier License in March 2019. The airline plans to begin service in September 2020. It will operate out of Seoul Incheon International Airport. Initially starting with two aircraft, it will have a full fleet of ten aircraft by 2024. It’s a hybrid carrier, meaning it offers premium quality at a reasonable price.
But, it will not focus on short-haul routes. Whilst it will start long-haul flights to Los Angeles and San Jose, it later plans to branch out to Oceania and Europe as well. It is currently looking at routes to Honolulu, Vancouver, Munich (or Berlin) and Cairns.
A spokesperson for the airline said:
“Our seat only consists of two classes: Premium economy and Economy. There is no long haul route provider who provides a premium economy seat in Korea.”
It will be South Korea’s second airline operating the Dreamliner, after Korean Air.
What do you think of Air Premia’s Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner deal? Do you think the airline will be a hit? Let us know in the comments.