Turkish Airlines now has Boeing 787-9 aircraft. On July 17, 2019, the 787-9 flew its first long-haul flight in Turkish colors. The aircraft flew THY66 from Istanbul to Bali and arrived almost 45 minutes ahead of schedule.
Turkish Airlines Boeing 787-9
Turkish Airlines is offering their latest hard product in business class on the Boeing 787-9. The aircraft is outfitted with 30 new business class seats similar to that on Singapore Airlines’ Boeing 787-10.
This seat is a huge upgrade compared to the current product onboard Turkish Airlines. Depending on the aircraft, the current product sometimes sees middle seats in business class! Although they have an excellent soft product, this improvement to the hard product is a welcome renewal.
In economy, Turkish Airlines outfits their 787-9s with 270 seats. Like most 787s, these are in a 3-3-3 configuration.
The aircraft originally flew short-haul routes from Istanbul. Normally, airlines will fly new aircraft on special routes for crew training purposes. After all, if something goes wrong service-wise on a two-hour flight, it is less likely to negatively impact the passengers than on a thirteen-hour flight. Currently, the 787-9 flies several daily flights between Istanbul and Antalya. This is a popular route for Turkish, so it is unlikely that these aircraft are going out empty.
The first long-haul flight
Turkish Airlines previously announced that the first long-haul flight for the 787-9 would occur on July 17, 2019. The route, THY66 operates from Istanbul to Bali– a new destination for Turkish Airlines. This route is currently operated thrice weekly with Boeing 787-9 aircraft. From August 7th, this route will be served daily with 787-9 aircraft.
We’ve got a brand new route for you to explore: Bali.
— Turkish Airlines (@TurkishAirlines) July 17, 2019
It is not uncommon for first flights to be rescheduled due to delays. However, on July 17th, Turkish Airlines flew their 787-9 to Bali. The first flight seems to have gone successfully and landed almost 45 minutes early.
LIVE: After weeks of crew familiarisation flights on domestic services, @TurkishAirlines is flying its Boeing 787-9 on its first longhaul route, and to a new destination – Bali. Follow TC-LLA to Denpasar on the inaugural #TK66 : https://t.co/LKND5MKRHr@flightradar24 #avgeek pic.twitter.com/Haae8TVwpr
— Airport Webcams (@AirportWebcams) July 16, 2019
The next routes
According to Turkish Airlines, the 787 will fly on routes to New York, Washington D.C., Atlanta, Denpasar (Bali), Mexico City, Cancun, New Delhi, Bogota, Panama City, Amsterdam, Dubai, and London. This means that passengers will have several opportunities to fly on this aircraft across multiple continents. The 787 seems to be serving a dual purpose by expanding the Turkish Airlines route network while also replacing the A330 on several routes.
Compared to the A330, the 787-9 will offer better operating economics for Turkish Airlines. At the same time, the 787-9 will increase capacity for the carrier on several routes.
Turkish Airlines recently had an issue with a 787-9 when a window melted during a photoshoot. Fortunately, Turkish was able to fix that aircraft. Now, as more 787s enter service, Turkish Airlines will expand the number of destinations the 787 flies to.
Will you fly on Turkish Airlines’ 787-9? Let us know in the comments!