It is rare that a presidential aircraft comes on the market for sale. However, for nearly two years, Mexico has been trying to offload its highly premium Boeing 787 Dreamliner designed for VIP transport. Here’s a look inside the lavish Boeing 787-8.
A look inside Mexico’s VIP Boeing 787-8
The first thing to consider is the price tag. Mexico believes the aircraft could be worth as much as $130 million. This is unsurprising given the cost of the 787 itself on top of the luxury interior outfitted onboard the jet, which also comes at a cost.
The interior is configured to support governmental operations. Onboard the aircraft are a few upright seating areas with conference tables where people like political advisors, invited guests, or governmental officials can congregate and get some work done while inflight.
Also, onboard the jet are rows of upright seating. These seats are definitely better than flying in coach. People like invited guests or reporters might occupy this cabin on a flight.
Separate from these seating and meeting areas are more private places for the President of Mexico to enjoy a flight– especially if it is a long-haul jaunt. There is a bed onboard for an overnight flight that is much bigger than a traditional lie-flat business class seat.
In addition, before landing and heading to meet with international dignitaries or coming back home to discuss a trip abroad, there is a full-size bathroom with a shower where the President can freshen up and get ready for whatever they have on the ground. While some passenger airlines, like Emirates, offer showers onboard, those bathrooms are not nearly as big as the one onboard this flight.
Lastly, there is also room for the executive to have space for themselves. A private office is necessary when the President needs to get some work done.
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Mexico does not actually want the Boeing 787 anymore. Former President Enrique Peña Nieto had ordered the aircraft, which arrived in Mexico in 2016. It is estimated the plane cost around $218 million for the Mexican government, which is quite a pretty penny for the jet.
However, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador was not impressed by the aircraft and considered it a waste of money. He has, instead, chosen to fly commercial, usually in coach. Highly unusual for a country’s leader, this is part of his approach to cut costs. Other steps he has taken include selling off other governmental planes.
There have been plenty of tries to get the aircraft off of Mexico’s shoulders. There was talk about selling the aircraft first to a private buyer, which did not come through. Then, the government also looked at Canada to take the 787 off of Mexico’s hands for around $130 million. After that, the plan was to raffle off the Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner. This– an extraordinary option– has also did not get rid of the Boeing 787.
The Boeing 787-8
The jet was also one of the original test 787-8 aircraft created by Boeing, according to Planespotters.net. It is quite common for some of these testbed aircraft to enter service with an airline or a private buyer. The Mexican government probably got a discount on the Boeing 787-8 since it was a white tail Dreamliner at the time of sale.
The 787-8 was previously stored at Victorville for nearly two years before it was flown back to Mexico City, where it currently sits idle.
Other heads of state aircraft
One of the most famous VVIP aircraft in the world is Air Force One. Currently, the US government has Boeing 747-8Is on order to replace the aging VC-25s, which are the iconic Boeing 747-200s that fly the President of the United States.
This year, India took its new VVIP Boeing 777 aircraft that will fly around Prime Minister Narendra Modi. This aircraft is a Boeing 777-300ER.
As for Airbus jets, Germany’s Air Force has Airbus A350 aircraft to fly VVIPs, dubbed “Merkel One” after the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel.
Are you a fan of Mexico’s VVIP Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner? Let us know in the comments!