United Airlines has taken delivery of its first Boeing 787-9 with a new interior. This new interior will gradually come on all Boeing 787s. However, for now, only one 787-8 and one 787-9 has this new interior. Onboard these aircraft, customers will find the latest Polaris seats and a new premium economy cabin called Premium Plus.
The Points Guy reports that the first 787-9 with new interiors has been delivered to United. Registered as N29975, the 787-9 flew from Boeing’s plant in Charleston to Chicago early on January 31st according to data from Flightradar24. This 787-9 is also wearing United’s latest livery per an image posted at JetPhotos. It will join along with United’s 787-10s also sporting the new livery.
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— United Airlines (@united) January 3, 2020
The new interior on this 787-9
United is working on upgrading its current 787 fleet. Onboard most 787s, passengers will find an outdated 2-2-2 configuration. The color scheme is a bit dark and bland which does not help make the seats stand out. On the other hand, the new cabins have a much better color scheme and make the aircraft feel more modern.
According to The Points Guy, the new 787-9 will have 48 Polaris seats, 21 Premium Plus seats, 39 economy seats with extra legroom (Economy Plus), and 149 economy seats. Compared to the current 787-9 configuration, United is maintaining the same size Polaris cabin. However, United is massively decreasing its Economy Plus seats. From the 88 currently, United is bringing that number down to 39 while increasing economy class to 149 from the 116 it is now.
Ultimately, the 787-9 is a largely premium-configured aircraft with only 257 seats on board. However, this is in line with what United is going for. In a quest for premium passengers, United is adding incredibly large Polaris cabins on some aircraft while reducing it on others. The smaller 787-8 is one widebody that will have a smaller Polaris cabin.
This will give United some additional opportunities to differentiate route options for each aircraft. The 787-8 will fly on more leisure routes to destinations like Papeete while the 787-9 should fly some more important routes with greater business demand such as from Houston to Sydney.
This new configuration will take the skies soon. Currently, there is limited information about which routes this aircraft will fly. Hopefully, this aircraft will come on some of United’s longer 787-9 routes. But, that is yet to be determined. As United increases its count of 787s with new interiors. these aircraft will likely become more reliable on certain routes. The current 787-8 with new interiors, registered as N27908, is flying on a number of routes, nothing consistent yet. Although, on February 1st, that 787-8 will fly from San Francisco to Chengdu.
Would you fly on United’s new 787-9? Let us know in the comments!