Beginning May 9th, EVA Air will fly the Boeing 787-9 on its routes from Taipei Taoyuan-Bangkok-Vienna and its non-stop service from Taipei-Vienna. Currently, EVA Air operates those routes on a Boeing 777-300ER. Beginning in October, EVA Air will also change its Taipei-Amsterdam service to a Boeing 787-9.
The Boeing 787-9 vs Boeing 777-300ER
The EVA Air 777-300ER has a seating capacity of 330, whereas the Boeing 787-9 which will replace it seats 304. The reduction of capacity is not a concern for EVA Air since it’s a ‘marginal decrease’, according to the airline. The Taiwanese flagship carrier’s European routes only account for around 10% of its flights.
Aside of the decreased seating capacity, the 787-9 offers a benefits in efficiency. The 787-9 is 20% to 25% more fuel efficient per seat than the 777-330ER, and has lower emissions too. The lighter-weight composite material of its construction help to achieve this better performance. The engines, GEnx, come from General Electric Aviation. The lower cost of operation should surely make up for the decreased number of seats to be sold.
EVA Air’s Asia to Europe routes
EVA Air provides services from its hub at Taoyuan International Airport in Taiwan’s capital city of Taipei to a number of European cities. These include Vienna, Amsterdam, London (Heathrow) and Paris (Charles de Gaulle). While the Vienna and Amsterdam routes are switching to the 787-9, the London and Paris routes are sticking to the 777-300ER.
The Star-Alliance Member airline received its first 787-9 last October at Boeing’s South Carolina Delivery Center. The plane was the first delivery of Eva Air’s order for 24 Dreamliners, the largest Taiwanese order to date, which also included 18 787-10 aircrafts. The order also calls for EVA Air to operate, under lease from ALC, four additional 787-9s and two 787-10s.
Onboard experience on EVA’s 787-9
The new EVA Air 787-9 introduced the anticipated Royal Laurel Business Class with seating capacity for 26 passengers. Economy class holds 278 passengers. The Royal Laurel Business Class offers seats measuring a generous 23 inches wide and 76 inches long for full-lie down capability, especially desirable for the long-haul flight. Taoyuan to Amsterdam averages a flight time of 13 hours, for example.
EVA Air partnered with Designworks, a part of BMW, to design the new business class on their Dreamliners. The company improved upon the privacy screens and storage room available to each passenger. Additionally, they upgraded the in-flight entertainment system to include an 18-inch touch-screen monitor.
Economy class on the new EVA Dreamliner is impressive, as well. With seat design from the trusted company RECARO. In-flight entertainment for economy seats is on a 12-inch touch-screen monitor.