All Nippon to Begin 787 Flights to U.S. Next Fiscal Year

Dreamliner Takes Flight as ANA Touts Bigger Cabin
Flight NH7871, carrying paying passengers and more than 40 journalists, took off at 12:23 p.m. from Tokyo’s Narita airport. Photographer: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg

Dec. 21 (Bloomberg) -- All Nippon Airways Co. plans to begin operating flights on Boeing Co.’s 787 Dreamliner to the U.S. starting next fiscal year as it seeks to meet rising travel demand with the fuel-efficient jet.

Asia’s largest listed airline by sales will make the flights from Tokyo’s Narita International airport to Seattle, Washington and San Jose, California, starting in the year from April 1, it said in a statement today.

All Nippon, the first to operate Boeing’s composite-plastic plane commercially, announced the new flights after saying last week postponed delivery of a third Dreamliner would delay the start of 787 services to Beijing by a month. The airline is counting on the plane to cut fuel costs.

“There is strong demand for flights to San Francisco now, so we are expecting solid demand for our Seattle and San Jose flights, too,” President Shinichiro Ito told reporters today in Tokyo.

ANA rose 0.45 percent to 221 yen at the 3 p.m. close in Tokyo, while the Nikkei 225 Stock Average gained 1.5 percent.

Boeing rolled out the first 787 painted in ANA’s livery on Aug. 6 at its plant in Everett, Washington following more than three years of delays. The planes may allow ANA to add new routes in Europe and North America as they can fly further than aircraft of a similar size and are about 20 percent more fuel efficient.

To contact the reporters on this story: Anna Mukai in Tokyo at amukai1@bloomberg.net; Kiyotaka Matsuda in Tokyo at kmatsuda@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Neil Denslow at ndenslow@bloomberg.net