On board the first-ever Boeing 787 revenue service

A decade since he stepped aboard the Dreamliner’s revenue debut, Chris Sloan recounts his history-making experience and looks back at the 787’s first years in service

On October 26, 2011, I boarded All Nippon Airways (ANA) flight 7871 – the Boeing 787’s inaugural revenue service. The special charter from Tokyo/Narita to Hong Kong/Chek Lap Kok was long on ceremony and historic significance, heralding the introduction of a truly game-changing aircraft. Boeing’s “moonshot” programme was a technical tour de force, with the company cramming more cutting-edge technology into any airliner than it had since the 747, some 40 years earlier.

A marshaller prepares to guide JA801A onto stand at Hong Kong/Kai Tak while the jet receives a water cannon salute from the airport's rescue and fire fighting service. AirTeamImages.com/Edwin Chai

“The 787 set a benchmark” said Tom Sanderson, Boeing’s director of product marketing for the 787, who has been with the programme in marketing and engineering capabilities since 2005.


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