United Schedules Its First 787-10 Flights On Transcon Routes

United Airlines currently operates 37 Boeing 787 aircraft. The B787 is cementing its place as a solid choice for medium-to-long-haul flights for many airlines. Later this year deliveries of the United 787-10 will begin. With a total of 14 of the -10 aircraft on order, the airline is starting to release details of which routes the aircraft will service. United Airlines will become the first American airline to operate the B787-10.

About the B787-10

The Boeing 787-10 is the American manufacturer’s newest incarnation of the B787 aircraft. The other aircraft in the B787 family are the -8 which is the original 787, and the -9. While the -10 has a larger capacity than any other aircraft in the family, its range is reduced to compensate. The aircraft has a capacity for 40 more passengers than the -9, however, its range is 1200 nautical miles less than that of its smaller sister.

B787-8 B787-9 B787-10
Seats (2 class) 242 290 330
Range (Nautical Miles) 7,355nmi 7,635nmi 6,430nmi

Source: Boeing

Initial Routes

While United is set to start receiving the B787-10 in the remaining part of 2018, flights using the aircraft will not commence until January 2019. The American airline will use the aircraft initially on two transcontinental routes. The first route to launch will be between the airline’s Newark Liberty International Airport hub (EWR), and Los Angeles International (LAX). At 2,133nmi as the crow flies, the route more than comfortably fits into the aircraft’s range. This suggests that United are using the airliner for its payload capacity rather than its range. Clearly, the route between New York and Los Angeles is a high traffic corridor for United as the airline will offer Daily flights from January 7th, increasing to twice daily on February 14th.

united 787-10
Both United 787-10 routes will operate out of Newark (EWR). Photo: GCMap

The second route that the United 787-10 will operate will see transcontinental flights travelling between Newark and San Francisco (SFO). Flights with the B787-10 will begin operation on February 14th with twice-daily flights. These will increase to thrice-daily on March 8th.

“United Airlines is the first North American carrier to operate the Boeing 787-10 aircraft. While United typically operates its widebody aircraft for international routes, it will operate its first -10 aircraft between New York/Newark and Los Angeles and San Francisco.”

New Polaris Seats

The B787-10 will be the first aircraft to feature United’s new ‘Polaris’ seat in Business Class. The lie-flat seats are arranged in a 1-2-1 configuration meaning that every seat has direct aisle access. This is a luxury that is becoming more and more common as airlines aim to eliminate the problem of asking passengers to move so that you can get up. Passengers enjoying these lie-flat seats will also receive the usual benefits such as fine dining.

New B787-9 Order

In the same press release as the B787-10 announcement, United Airlines confirmed that is had placed an order with Boeing. The order for additional B787 aircraft will see the airline purchase a further 9 Boeing 787-9 aircraft. These additional -9 aircraft are expected to be delivered beginning in 2020. This means that by the end of the year United Airlines will operate a fleet of 40 Boeing 787 aircraft, with a further 24 on order.