KLM’s First Boeing 787-10 Spotted In Charleston

Yesterday, the first photos of KLM’s Boeing 787-10 made an appearance on Twitter. The new acquisition has a special livery showing the number 100, along with a ‘ribbon’ in the colors of the Dutch flag, weaving through the numbers. The photos were taken at Boeing’s Charleston, South Carolina plant.

KLM’s First Boeing 787-10 Spotted In Charleston
Pictured here is the 13th KLM 787-9. Photo: KLM


The new aircraft’s registration is PHBKA and it’s livery celebrates KLM’s 100th birthday, as the airline was founded in 1919. According to KLM’s website, on 29th June 2019, their very first Boeing 787-10 will land in Amsterdam Schiphol Airport. This will be exactly 100 days before their 100th birthday.


If PHBKA adopts the 787-10 seat map on KLM’s website, then the aircraft will have 38 business class seats and 306 seats in economy. WiFi will be available onboard as well. Business class seating will have a 1-2-1 configuration while economy will be 3-3-3. All seats will have access to power while a total of eight lavatories will serve passengers.

KLM’s First Boeing 787-10 Spotted In Charleston
A KLM 787-9. The airline will receive it’s first 787-10 later this month. Photo: KLM

Fitting into the KLM fleet

KLM has been modernizing their fleet in recent years. In fact, we recently reported on the fact that KLM has plans to retire all of its 747s by 2021. One of those 747s actually suffered an engine failure in late April as it departed Seoul Incheon, South Korea.

The 787-10 is the second Dreamliner type that KLM will be adding to its fleet. The -10 is a longer version of the 787-9, thus having a higher seating capacity. KLM has ordered eight of the 787-10 variant. KLM had this to say about their new aircraft:

“The aircraft offers a range of passenger benefits in terms of travel comfort. For example, the greater air pressure in the cabin means that passengers arrive feeling more rested. And for passengers wanting to stay online during their flight, there’s WiFi on board.”

What the 787-10 gains in length and passenger capacity, it loses in range. The 787-10 has a range of only 7,400 miles, while 787-9’s range is 8,785. The airline has 13 787-9 aircraft in its fleet with no further orders of the type.

KLM’s website names Kilimanjaro, Dar es Salaam, Dubai and Delhi as some of the future destinations that will be flown by their 787-10 fleet.

Turning 100

The special livery spotted on the new aircraft is celebrating KLM’s 100th birthday. This makes KLM one of the oldest airlines in the world, as it was founded on October 7, 1919. KLM is Dutch for Koninklijke Luchtvaart Maatschappij, which translates to “Royal Aviation Company”.

KLM’s First Boeing 787-10 Spotted In Charleston
A KLM plane in vintage livery. The airline turns 100 this year. Photo: KLM

This year British Airways is also claiming to celebrate a 100th birthday. However, the founding date is based on a British Airways’ “forerunner company, Aircraft Transport and Travel Limited (AT&T)”, which launched the world’s first daily international scheduled air service between London and Paris – according to the BA website.

As such, the claim that BA is older than KLM is up for debate. We’ll leave you to decide.