Featured image: Brandon Farris/Airways

Hawaiian Airlines Inaugurates Its New Flagship Dreamliner

DALLAS — On Monday, Hawaiian Airlines (HA) inaugurated its new flagship aircraft, the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, on its Honolulu to San Francisco route. 

The flight was operated by N781HA, named “Kapuahi,” a star known as Aldebaran in Western astronomy.

Photo: Brandon Farris/Airways

“Today marks an incredible achievement for all of us at Hawaiian Airlines, and I’d like to thank all of our teammates, Boeing, and many partners for helping us make this moment possible,” said Peter Ingram, president and CEO of Hawaiian Airlines.

“Our 787-9 is a true flagship product that, when paired with our crew's award-winning hospitality, will provide guests with an unforgettable Hawaiʻi travel experience.”

At a ceremony at gate A4 at Honolulu’s Daniel K. Inouye International Airport (HNL), the new aircraft was celebrated with live music, a hula dance, and a blessing ceremony then, each guest was given a fresh lei as they went onboard.

Photo: Brandon Farris/Airways

Back in February, HA finally had an opportunity to show off the first of its new flagship fleet when it unveiled “Kapuahi” to media and employees, which we reported on. It will now spend the next month flying as Hawaiian 12 and 11. 

Photo: Brandon Farris/Airways

Onboard Kapuahi

As guests embark aboard 781, they are welcomed to what is one of the best entries seen to date on any aircraft HA wanted to replicate with an island-inspired theme that includes wood board-looking flooring, architect on the walls, then over all of some stunning purple, blue and orange lighting as you step on.

Hawaiian has said this is meant to replicate a Hawaiian Sunset with its colors. It is a major upgrade from its current fleet. From here, it doesn’t matter which way you step; these amazing colors rush through all the cabins on the Dreamliner.

Stars in the ceiling. Photo: Brandon Farris/Airways

However, when you step to the left and have a seat in one of the 34 Leihōkū (garland of stars) business class seats, you are treated to a bonus. HA has chosen to replicate a starlit ceiling for its passengers. 

The starlit ceiling was inspired by the constellations that guided early Polynesian voyagers. Passengers are also provided with an 18-inch display and the ability to wirelessly charge devices.

The pod. Photo: Brandon Farris/Airways

 This class is configured in a 1-2-1 type layout as the pods are in on Hawaiian! Implementing this kind of layout offers privacy to each passenger, so even if you are flying alone and end up in the middle of the plane, you still have privacy.  

For the main cabin, which is the majority of the aircraft, Hawaiian partnered with Collins Aerospace Aspire to fit 266 seats. 

The majority of them are 3-3-3, but due to spacing, they go 2-3-2 as you get near the rear of the aircraft. It features a 12-inch display screen along with USB-A and USB-C charging ports. Of these 266 seats, 79 are “Extra Comfort,” which provides more legroom and access to AC power outlets.

Main cabin. Photo: Brandon Farris/Airways

New Safety Video

On this inaugural flight, guests were shown an all-new in-flight safety video featuring 57 cast members, a combination of HA employees and family members. 

The video was recorded from all across the Hawaiian Islands and will eventually be rolled out on the Airbus A330 fleet. It will be the safety video for all 787 flights.

Second Dreamliner Delivered

On Thursday, April 11, 2024, the second Boeing 787 Dreamliner was delivered to Hawaiian on a flight from Paine Field. 

This aircraft, N780HA, is expected to enter service on the Hawaiian 2 and 1 run between Honolulu and Los Angeles on May 14. The next day, the type will be shifted from the HNL-SFO route and begin flying on the Honolulu to Phoenix route.

Photo: Brandon Farris/Airways

Hawaiian expects to receive its third 787-9 Dreamliner by the end of the year. The airline has 12 firm orders and expects the following nine between 2025 and 2027.

Photo: Brandon Farris/Airways

The carrier will celebrate its 95th Anniversary later this year, and the 787s are already being decked out with a special sticker to celebrate this major aviation milestone. Airways was on board the Honolulu-San Francisco inaugural on Monday. Chech our video below.

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