The idyllic island paradise of Tahiti just got a lot closer, with the first commercial flight of Air Tahiti Nui’s latest fleet addition, a Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
This heralds in the beginning of Air Tahiti Nui’s phase-out of their Airbus A340 fleet, a plane whilst pretty, does not belong in this fuel conscious world.
The new Air Tahiti Nui 787-9 Dreamliner
The new plane was first delivered to Air Tahiti Nui back in October but has only now begun commercial flights. The first flight was Papeete, Tahiti to Auckland, New Zealand, but will switch to Los Angeles frequences as tourist trade picks up.
Tomorrow is an important day for us. Our 1st Boeing will operate its 1st commercial flight. The departure from PPT will be this Wed, Nov 7 at 8:45AM and will arrive in AKL on Thu, Nov 8 at 01:05PM 🛬We wish a great trip to all our passengers! 📸@AVgeeksTahiti #TahitianDreamliner pic.twitter.com/PfzrrwwpF8
— Air Tahiti Nui (@AirTahitiNui) November 7, 2018
Tahiti is a fantastic destination that we highly recommend, you can check out our guide to getting there here!
Additionally, they have another three Boeing Dreamliners on the way. The second is scheduled to be delivered in January, with the third in May and the last in September. The first two are on lease from a leasing firm based out in California, with the latter two to be owned by the Airline.
These four new Dreamliners will operate the four international routes that the Airline runs. Auckland, Tokyo, Los Angeles, and a one-stop service to Paris via Los Angeles.
This would mean there would be two 787’s on the LA to Tahiti route year round (With one connecting through to Paris).
Goodbye Airbus A340
With the plan to have another three 787s delivered next year, allowing the airline to phase out its five A340-300s as the new aircraft arrive. Of these five A340s, one is on lease (and will be returned at the end of November) and the other four are owned. It is not known who will be the new owner/s at this time.
Careful readers will have noticed that they currently have five A340’s, but are replacing them with only four 787’s. Essentially, Air Tahiti Nui believes their four routes can be covered by the four planes, as the former fifth A340 was only really used as a replacement craft or for charter flights. Whether or not this will affect their bottom line, we shall see.
What does this mean for the future of Air Tahiti Nui?
The airline has not ruled out further fleet expansion nor additional routes but has said that this is good for now.
The reason is that Air Tahiti Nui is a destination carrier for Tahiti, and the destination is full. As in, the hotels during peak season in French Polynesia are booked out. Hence even if they had more routes and more passengers… there is nowhere for them to stay. This might change in the future as more resorts open in 2020-2021.
As for Through Passengers (Perhaps those on Los Angeles to New Zeland) are already restricted because current legs of the route are full with destination passengers.
Air Tahiti Nui unveils its very first on-board safety video on the #TahitianDreamliner 🎬
As an ambassador of our islands, Air Tahiti Nui's video highlights both the beauty of #TheIslandsofTahiti, the natural charm and elegance of our crews ✈🇵🇫https://t.co/RZHLnucSux
— Air Tahiti Nui (@AirTahitiNui) October 19, 2018
What do you think? Will you be flying to Tahiti on the new 787 Dreamliner?