Boeing and Korean Air 747-8I

Korean Airlines Receives Their First 747-8 Intercontinental

Boeing and Korean Air celebrated the delivery of the airline's first 747-8 Intercontinental. The new fuel-efficient 747-8 is the first of 10 747-8 Intercontinentals Korean Air has on order.

"We look forward to leveraging the next-generation characteristics of the 747-8, including its efficiency and brand new interior, to provide an unmatched flying experience to our customers," said Walter Cho, Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Korean Air. "Korean Air is committed to adding environmentally friendly, next-generation airplanes into our world-class fleet. In addition, these new airplanes will enable us to provide the highest levels of comfort to our valued passengers."

With this delivery, Korean Air becomes the first airline in the world to operate both the passenger and freighter versions of the 747-8. Korean Air currently operates seven 747-8 Freighters.

"Korean Air has been a valued Boeing customer for more than 40 years and we are honored to celebrate yet another milestone delivery together with their first 747-8 Intercontinental," said Ray Conner, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes. "As one of the few airlines that have operated almost all models of the 747 family, we are excited that Korean Air is extending the tradition with our newest 747-8I. I am confident that the 747-8 will continue to play an important role in Korean Air's long-term success."

Korea's flag carrier currently operates a fleet of 88 Boeing passenger airplanes that includes 737, 747 and 777 airplanes. The airline also operates an all-Boeing cargo fleet of 28 747-400, 747-8 and 777 Freighters.

KAL and the 747


Korean Air's partnership with the Boeing 747 begins in 1970 with an order for the 747-200F. In service in 1973, Korean Air was the first 747 freighter operator in the Pacific. The 747-200F offered a capacity of 105 tons (95.3 tonnes). This marked the 200th order for the 747 family.


Korean Air places an order for 747s – Boeing's largest commercial-airplane agreement at the time with a non U.S. airline. The order for 10 firm and eight options, includes 747 freighters, 747-100s and 747-200s.


The Boeing 747 Special Performance, or SP, is a modified version designed for ultra-long-range flights. The 747SP is 48 feet 4 inches (14.73 m) shorter than the 747-100. Korean Air used the 747SP from Seoul to the U.S. and Europe.


Korean Air introduces the 747-300, featuring an extended upper deck – more than 23 feet longer—and carries more passengers than the 747-200. The 747−300 introduced a new straight stairway to the upper deck, instead of a spiral staircase on earlier variants, which creates room above and below for more seats.


Korean Air begins operating the first of 27 747-400s. The newest of the 747 family, it offers increased range and fuel efficiency with a wingspan of 212 feet (64 meters), and 6-foot-high (1.8-meter-high) "winglets" on the wingtips.


The first 747-400 Freighter is delivered to Korean Air Cargo, the largest transpacific cargo carrier and the largest intra-Asian cargo carrier. The 747 400 Freighter is the largest commercial cargo transport in service at this time carrying 124 tons (113,000 kg) of cargo more than 4,400 nautical miles. By 2001, Korean Air has ordered 10 747-400 Freighters and eight 747-400 Extended Range Freighters.


The 747-8 Freighter enters Korean Air's fleet, with a range of 4,390 nautical miles (8,130 km) and a maximum structural payload capacity of 148 tons (134 tonnes), while offering an additional 4,221 cubic feet (120 m3) and 16 percent more revenue cargo volume than the 747-400 Freighter. Korean Air becomes the first airline in the world to operate both the 747-8 and 777 Freighters.


Korean Air becomes the first operator of both the passenger and freighter versions of the newest 747. Korean Air's newest 747-8 Intercontinental is configured with 368 seats and features new First Class Kosmo Suites with sliding doors and higher partitions to provide added privacy for passengers. The suites are equipped with updated in-flight entertainment systems, with large 24-inch high-definition monitors and new handheld touch remotes.

Korean Air 747 8I Delivery