SEATTLE, Dec. 07, 2000 -- Those with discriminating taste and a keen eye for quality tend to collect prized objects, and British Airways certainly fits this category. Just look at the way their collection of Boeing 777s has been growing steadily over the last couple of years.
The airline today took delivery of its 39th and 40th 777 airplanes, which follow five delivered earlier in the year and 10 in 1999. The new airplanes are 777-200ER (extended range) models. British Airways is scheduled to receive five more 777-200ERs next year, which will bring their 777 fleet to 45. The airline's first 777 was delivered in November 1995.
British Airways is on the cutting edge of the current trend in airline service and demonstrates this by the increase in its 777 fleet. The airline was quick to realize, along with Boeing, that the desire among the flying public for long-range, non-stop routes is rapidly increasing. The 777 ideally is suited to meet this need because it brings unparalleled comfort and economical operations to airlines like British Airways that are ready to meet these emerging passenger needs.
"The 777 enables us to deploy flexible capacity at the extremes of our network and is one of the key elements in our strategy to maximize customer service and shareholder value," said Dick Wyatt, British Airways general manager, Fleet Planning.
British Airways is the largest Boeing 777 customer outside the United States, and was one of the original eight "working together" airline partners who helped define the 777 while it was being designed. The relationship between the two companies goes back to 1941 when one of the carrier's founding companies, BOAC (British Overseas Airways Corporation), took delivery of three Boeing 314 Clippers. In 1956, the company entered the jet age with its first order for Boeing 707s. British Airways now flies more than 260 Boeing jets. The carrier operates nearly every other Boeing airplane model -- the 737, 747, 757 and 767.
"It's obvious that British Airways recognizes the benefits of operating the 777 in today's long-haul, point-to-point markets," said Toby Bright, senior vice president, Sales, Europe and Russia. "British Airways has had great success thus far with the 777 and we're glad they have chosen to expand their fleet further with this economical and reliable airplane."
British Airways' new 777-200ERs will be powered by Rolls Royce engines.
The first 777 model, the 777-200, entered service in 1995. Since then, four additional 777 models have been launched, including two longer-range models in February 2000. Since its introduction, the 777 has won numerous accolades and praise for its new approach to passenger comfort, crew workload and reliability. In fact, recent independent passenger preference polls have found that three out of four passengers prefer the Boeing 777 for long-haul flights.