Biman Bangladesh Orders Two 787-9 Dreamliners

Biman Bangladesh Airlines has placed an order for two Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners. The order, which was announced today at the Dubai Airshow, will add to the four Boeing 787-8s currently in Biman’s fleet.

A Biman Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner
Biman has ordered two Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners. Photo: Boeing/Biman Bangladesh Airlines

The flag carrier of Bangladesh, Biman Bangladesh Airlines, will be adding two Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners to its fleet as part of a fleet modernization plan. The airline placed the order in October, but it has been unnamed in Boeing’s order list until now.

According to a press release published by Boeing, the two aircraft have a combined list price of $585 million. Discussing the order, Biman’s chairman of the board of directors, Air Marshal Muhammad Enamul Bari, said:

“One of our key priorities is to have a modern fleet with technologically-advanced airplanes that will enable us to expand our international reach.”

Given the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner’s extended range over the Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner, it is well-positioned to help the airline achieve its plans for international route expansion.

Biman Bangladesh Airlines’ current position

Although it’s the flag carrier of Bangladesh, Biman Bangladesh Airlines faces stiff competition from other airlines in the region. Biman has been operating since 1972, but for the first 24 years of operation, it was supported by a monopoly over air travel in Bangladesh.

Biman Bangladesh Airlines McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30
Biman Bangladesh Airlines has faced major corruption issues in the past. Photo: M.Oertle via Flickr

Despite having to adapt to outside competition, the airline managed to stay afloat. However, a longstanding problem with corruption held it back for many years. Now, with the corruption problem rooted out, the airline has finally become profitable.

In 2018/19 it posted a small profit of $32 million, but as shown by today’s announcement, it comes amidst financial costs associated with fleet expansion. Biman received the last of its order of four Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners in September.

Where will Biman fly its Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners?

Simple Flying has requested comment from Biman Bangladesh Airlines regarding its plans for its new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners. The airline hasn’t been able to respond yet, but we will update the article once it has.

Despite no confirmation from the airline itself yet, it is safe to assume a couple of things given the fact that it has ordered the Boeing 787-9 as opposed to the 787-8.

A Biman Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner
Biman will be adding two, longer-range Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners to its fleet. Photo: Steve Lynes via Flickr

The Boeing 787-9 is the mid-range variant of the three Boeing 787 Dreamliner models. As well as having an additional range of 280 miles over the smaller 787-8, the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner has 280 seats in a two-class seating configuration, compared to the 787-8’s 242.

According to Air Marshal Muhammad Enamul Bari, this additional range and seating capacity will allow Biman to reach new destinations.

“While we have a good domestic network, we plan to extend our international network to include more destinations in Europe, Asia and the Middle East,” Bari said.

Alongside the obvious improvements in seating capacity and range, the Boeing 787 Dreamliner offers fuel savings of up to 25% compared to older aircraft. This is a major draw to airlines, especially smaller ones, where every cost-saving matters.