Japan Airlines announced that they will operate the Boeing 787 and the Airbus A350 on their Domestic Flights from September this year. Japan Airlines is planning to replace its ageing 777 fleet with the newer and more comfortable airliners for passengers.
The announcement comes prior to the carrier's first A350 delivery. The brand new Japan Airlines Airbus A350-900 Aircraft will offer 12 designated 'first class' seating in a 2-2-2 configuration, 94 new 'Class J' seats, equivalent to Premium Economy, in a 2-4-2 configuration and 263 Economy seats in a 3-3-3 configuration. Each seat is also equipped with its own In-Flight Entertainment, with AC and USB power sockets, with free WiFi access.
Japan Airlines is one of the few carriers to have 'First Class' cabin on board the Airbus A350. Most operators chose to drop the four class cabin configuration, instead going for a Business, Premium Economy and Economy Class Cabin. Currently, only China Eastern and Malaysia Airlines (MAS re-branded their First Class to Business Suite) chose to have first class on board the Airbus A350.
Japan Airlines will debut its A350s on the route from Tokyo Haneda Airport to Fukuoka on September 1, 2019. The A350 is planned to fly between Tokyo and Sapporo, Okinawa, Osaka and as well as its launch route to Fukuoka.
Japan Airlines will receive their first Airbus A350-900 on the 13 June 2019. Japan Airlines has ordered 18 of the Airbus A350-900 with an additional order of 13 Airbus A350-1000. The brand new fleet of Airbus A350s are intended to replace their 40 aging Boeing 777.
Besides operating the Airbus A350 on Domestic Flights, the airline has decided to use the Boeing 787 too. The airline has 25 Boeing 787-8 and 17 Boeing 787-9 in operation and all have been configured for long haul operations. However, the airline still has 3 Boeing 787-9s and 4 Boeing 787-8s due to be delivered. Some of these Boeing 787 jets will be used for Domestic Flights within Japan.
Many people always question the need for these 2 airlines to operate wide-body jetliners on short haul domestic flights. Is it really necessary? The answer is in fact, yes! Japan Airlines and other Japanese Carriers like All Nippon Airways operate wide-body jetliners on domestic flights due to the sheer number of domestic travelers demanding airline services within Japan. It wouldn't be efficient for the 2 airlines to purchase more narrow-body jetliners and plan more domestic routes as this can increase fuel cost and other tariffs. Thus, JAL and ANA use wide-body jetliners on their Domestic Routes and short haul flights.