Boeing 787 Set To Become Hawaiian Airlines Flagship Aircraft In 2022

In 2018, Hawaiian Airlines announced that it expected the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner to join its holdings in 2021. However, amid the impact of the global health crisis, the widebody will now arrive later than initially planned. Despite this delay, the carrier states that the jet will be an integral member of its fleet in 2022.

Hawaiian Airlines Boeing 787
Hawaiian Airlines originally expected the first of its 10 Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners to arrive next year, but the Honolulu-based carrier will wait a little longer to take the type on. Photo: Hawaiian Airlines

A transitioning market

Simple Flying had the opportunity to interview Hawaiian Airlines SVP of marketing, Avi Mannis, about his airline’s plans amid the pandemic. He spoke about the carrier’s fleet following the impact of the current climate.

Hawaiian’s operations had been rocked by the travel restrictions in the US and across the globe. However, recently, the airline has seen improvements amid new testing protocols starting to bypass the need for quarantine.

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Hawaiian and American
Hawaiian Airlines is busy working with airports on the US mainland to help passengers travel to and from the islands more seamlessly amid the challenging conditions. Photo: Getty Images

The right moment

Nonetheless, the deferral of the 787 until 2022 will give time for the market to stabilize. Until then, the operator’s Airbus A330 aircraft will manage with widebody services.

“We have announced the deferral of our first 787s into late 2022. We continue to believe that the 787 is absolutely the right aircraft for our fleet and will be our flagship product, but we don’t need it in 2021. In the meantime, our long-haul fleet of A330s and A321neos is well-suited to our mission and gives us the capabilities we need to adapt our network to evolving market conditions,” Mannis told Simple Flying.

“We came into COVID with a young fleet that was ideal for our business model. So, we haven’t had to do much fleet restructuring.”

Hawaiian Airlines is satisfied that the current aircraft in its fleet will provide enough cover for its services. Photo: Getty Images

The perfect balance

Altogether, Mannis says that, from a fleet standpoint, Hawaiian came into the pandemic very well positioned. The carrier has aircraft that fit all of the niches that are the focus of its network strategy. Moreover, the airline wasn’t in a position of having to do a substantial fleet restructure as it didn’t have a lot of old aircraft that it had to retire rapidly.

Instead, Hawaiian hibernated many of its aircraft. However, the airline will be to deploy them again as the opportunity arises.

Hawaiian’s Airbus A330s will have no problem holding the fort for widebody operations until the Boeing 787 joins the fold. Photo: Getty Images

Ultimately, the 787 Dreamliner will be warmly welcomed on Hawaiian’s operations on longer distances. The plane will be perfect for services such as the carrier’s routes across the Pacific to Japan.

What are your thoughts about Hawaiian Airlines’ Boeing 787 Dreamliners? Are you looking forward to flying on the jets after they arrive with the carrier? Let us know what you think of the operator’s plans for its aircraft in the comment section.