Yesterday, American Airlines announced their first Boeing 787 Dreamliner routes. American, which received its first 787 in January, will start 787 service on 7 May with two daily round-trips between hubs at Dallas-Fort Worth and Chicago O'Hare.
On the same day, American will begin service to Beijing from DFW with Boeing 777-200ER aircraft (complementing existing service from ORD). The new route from DFW will change to the 787-8 on 2 June, becoming AA's first international route with the 787. Two days later, AA's existing route from DFW to Buenos Aires - Ezeiza will also change from a 777-200ER to a 787-8.
George Hamlin notes that with 226 seats the 787-8 is better suited to these thinner routes than the 247-seat 777-200ER. While Chicago-Beijing can support the larger aircraft, Dallas-Beijing is a new route which will take time to develop. Meanwhile, traffic to and from Argentina is likely to suffer due to political and economic troubles in that country, making the smaller aircraft a good fit.
At a distance of 11,983 miles (19,285 km), EZE is the farthest international airport from Beijing. Timing of AA's 787 flights will allow connections of about five hours both ways, and flying via DFW adds just 2.3% to the geodesic distance (though the path is quite different).
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Karl L. Swartz.
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