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United Airlines sees Boeing 787 as new long-haul ‘workhorse,’ orders 7 more Dreamliners

United Airlines is making some necessary changes to its long-haul fleet as people continue to avoid unnecessary travel — especially internationally — amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The Chicago-based carrier is relying on its efficient Boeing 787 fleet to fly its pared back long-haul schedule for the “foreseeable future,” United senior vice president of flight operations Bryan Quigley told pilots in an internal memo on 2 May that was viewed by TPG.

In other words, the Dreamliner is United’s new long-haul “workhorse”, as Quigley put it.

This is a significant shift for United whose international fleet has long depended on the Boeing 777. The launch operator of the 777 in 1995, the airline has 96 of the wide-body jets today, a fleet plan dated 9 April shows. It flies nearly half as many 787s, with 12 -8s, 28 -9s and 12 -10s in its fleet at the beginning of April.

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