Aviation News

March 5, 2012

Photos and Video: Boeing 787 Dream Tour Hits Boston

787 Chief Test Pilot Randy Neville, Japan Airlines Senior Vice President for the Americas Hiroyuki Hioka and Massport Director of Aviation Ed Freni are welcomed to Boston by the Lexington Minutemen. (Photo by Cary Liao)
787 Chief Test Pilot Randy Neville, Japan Airlines Senior Vice President for the Americas Hiroyuki Hioka and Massport Director of Aviation Ed Freni are welcomed to Boston by the Lexington Minutemen. (Photo by Cary Liao)
The first US city to receive scheduled Boeing 787 Dreamliner service got a sneak peek at the new state-of-the art jet Sunday morning as Boeing’s Dream Tour flew in to Boston Logan International Airport.

To the tune of “Yankee Doodle” played by Revolutionary War Minutemen wearing full costumes, the Dream Tour demo 787 (N787BX/ZA003) arrived in Boston from its previous tour stop, Toronto, around 9:30 am local time Sunday. Several plane spotters gathered to see the landing, while others waited atop the airport’s Economy Parking Lot to catch a glimpse of the shiny blue and white jet as it was pushed into the Delta Air Lines hangar for the day’s events.

The event was co-hosted by Japan Airlines (JAL), which plans to become the first operator of the 787 to serve Logan — or any US city. Set to launch on April 22nd, the Tokyo-Boston service will become the carrier’s first international 787 route. It will also mark the first nonstop service between Boston and Asia, a marker of how the 787′s unique efficiency will make it ideal for long-distance routes that don’t require the capacity of a larger plane like the 747 or A380.

In a speech to gathered media and airport employees, JAL’s Senior VP of the Americas, Hiroyuki Hioka, said the airline anticipates taking delivery of their first 787 “by the end of March” and is confident that the April 22nd start date will be achievable. Hioka touted the airline’s recent restructuring, which, he said, focuses on strength rather than size, and has led to larger than expected profits over the past three quarters. He also expressed pride in JAL’s historical fleet, which has consisted mostly of Boeing aircraft.

Boeing 787 Chief Test Pilot Randy Neville told the crowd that he has “the coolest job in the world,” which few would disagree with. Neville said during his Dream Tour travels, he hears pilots on ATC talking just as excitedly about the 787 when they see it today as when the first test flights began more than two years ago.

Boston marked the second stop on the fourth segment of the Dream Tour, which has shown off the plane literally around the world

Next stop: Newark, and we’ll be onboard the ferry flight. Follow us on Twitter @NYCAviation for photo updates from onboard the flight and stay tuned late Monday for a trip report with more photos and video.

Lexington Minutemen welcome the new plane. (Photo by Cary Liao)

Lexington Minutemen welcome the new plane. (Photo by Cary Liao)
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(Photos by Cary Liao)

Tweets, videos and photos from the visit collected from our own social media efforts and others, via Storify.