Japan Airlines has confirmed the debut of its new A350-1000 widebody for January 24. The route, previously announced, will be between Tokyo (Haneda) and New York (JFK).
Airbus would deliver JAL’s first A350-1000 on Wednesday, December 13. In original plans, the Japanese carrier intended to debut the aircraft in November, but later postponed the forecast to December.
Japan Airlines’ first A350-100 made its maiden flight in October. A second jet will be delivered by March 31, 2024 and will also be used on the Tokyo-New York flight.
With the arrival of the third aircraft, with no scheduled date, JAL will put the A350-1000 on the flight to Dallas-Fort Worth.
Japan Airlines has a firm order for 13 A350-1000s, which will join the 17 A350-900s previously ordered.
The twin-engine long-haul jet will be tasked with replacing the Boeing 777-300ER as the airline’s flagship aircraft. It is the first time that JAL will have an Airbus in this position, after being the largest operator of the Boeing 747 in the world in the 1980s.
Japan Airlines is also preparing the debut of a new passenger cabin with four service classes – First Class, Business Class, Economy Premium and Economy.
Despite taking the place of the 777-300ER, the A350-1000 will have fewer seats. There will be 239 seats compared to 244 seats on the Boeing.
First class will drop from eight to six seats while business class will expand from 49 to 54 seats. Premium Economy will also be smaller, with 24 seats instead of 40, offset by an increase of eight seats in Economy (155 versus 147).