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US sees first passenger flight by Boeing 787 Dreamliner

By Dominic Gates, The Seattle Times –

SEATTLE — Japan Airlines on Sunday flew the first scheduled Boeing 787 Dreamliner passenger service into the U.S. as it inaugurated service between Tokyo and Boston.

The 16-hour flight from Japan was greeted in Boston by a welcoming delegation, including Japan Airlines Chairman Masaru Onishi. The aircraft took off Monday for the first return flight to Tokyo.

The huge marketing success of the mid-size Dreamliner — Japan Airlines configures the cabin with 186 seats — was partly driven by the fact that it offers airlines the chance to open new long-distance routes between city pairs that don’t have enough traffic to justify putting a bigger jumbo jet in service.

Tokyo-Boston “is exactly the kind of long-haul point-to-point route the 787 was designed to fly,” Boeing Japan President Mike Denton, who was on the flight, said in a statement from Japan Airlines.

At the departure gate ceremony in Tokyo, Japan Airlines President Yoshiharu Ueki said the airline “is making best use of the aircraft’s long-range capability, appropriate capacity, and its economic performance,” the airline statement said.

Initially, Japan Airlines will fly four times a week each way between the two cities.

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