First El Al Boeing 787-8 Delivery Just Days Away

Israel’s flag carrier El Al is expecting to take ownership of his first Boeing 787-8 in just a matter of days. Paying Boeing $125 million USD, the airline expects the new aircraft to be delivered on its doorstep before the week is out.

El AL Dreamliner
El Al is expecting its new 787-8 this week. File photo of 787-9: El Al

What are the details?

El Al is currently in the process of retiring its Boeing 747 fleet and replacing them with Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft. Their initial goal was to acquire 16 Boeing Dreamliners, with 12 787-9s and four 787-8s. So far they have received all 12 of the 787-9s and are now preparing to take onboard the smaller version.

They have signed a purchasing agreement to take a single Boeing 787-8 from Boeing for $125 million USD, as reported by Flight Global. The deal is structured as a lease buyback, with the airline slowly paying off the aircraft (by using the aircraft to fly flights) and will end up owning it outright after 10 years (paying back roughly $12.5 million per year).

This price is super interesting as the Boeing 787-8 brand new is listed at $248.3 million USD. This just goes to show how much, or rather little, airlines actually pay for their aircraft despite the list prices.

Airlines generally only pay just before they are due to receive their aircraft and thus we know that now it is simply up to Boeing to help complete the delivery flight and then the 787-8 will be in action.

First El Al Boeing 787-8 Delivery Just Days Away
El Al is yet to update their seat maps to include the 787-8. Photo: El Al

Where will this new 787-8 be deployed?

The El Al 787-8 is currently due to fly to a variety of destinations on the El Al route network, from Boston to Mumbai to Paris.

As we wrote when El Al first inked the deal to fly to Chicago with the 787-8, Israel Consul General Aviv Ezra thanked Chicago’s Mayor Rahm Emanuel for the “win-win” flight and economic opportunity for both cities, adding: “We look forward to getting Israelis addicted to deep dish pizza, and Chicagoans hooked on hummus.

The aircraft will then go where it is needed, helping fill route remand that is not currently suited for the bigger Boeing 787-9s.

From there we also do know that it is intending to replace either a Boeing 747 or Boeing 777-200 service. As both these aircraft have a larger capacity than the 787-8, it is possible that this aircraft will be used for the less full long-range routes.

El Al Boeing 787 Dreamliner 787-9
El Al Boeing 787-9. Image by Boeing.

Instead of flying a half-empty 747 halfway around the globe, the airline can now fly a full Boeing 787-8 to profitability.

The aircraft will be powered by Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines, the very same that are currently under inspection for potential issues. As this aircraft is brand new, it is very likely that Rolls Royce has already taken the time to inspect the engines before delivery and thus subverting the problem.

What do you think? Are you excited to see the 787-8 in El Al livery? Let us know in the comments.