JAL A350

All images: Piotr Bozyk

Japan Airlines will begin flying its first-ever Airbus aircraft in September of this year.

Japan Airlines took delivery of its first of 31 Airbus A350 aircraft today in Toulouse. JAL will operate the extra-wide-body (XWB) passenger aircraft on its route between Tokyo Haneda and Fukuoka, starting in September. The milestone event was attended by JAL representative director and chairman Yoshiharu Ueki and Airbus chief commercial officer Christian Scherer.

“Initially, the aircraft will serve domestic routes. However, from 2023, when we start to receive our A350-1000s, it will also appear on international routes,”  said Ueki.

In 2013, Japan Airlines ordered a total of 31 A350 aircraft – 18 A350-900 and 13 A350-1000 – worth $5 billion. The A350 is the first-ever aircraft produced by Airbus for JAL and is the first of three that will be delivered to the Japanese airline this year. Each of JAL’s first three A350s will feature a special livery with the A350 logo in three different colors: red to symbolize challenge, silver to represent innovation and green for environmental protection.

JAL’s A350-900 features the Airspace by Airbus cabin, with capacity for 369 passengers in a three-class layout: 12 first-class seats, 94 business-class seats and 269 economy seats. Each seat will be equipped with a personal in-flight entertainment monitor, where passengers can enjoy a wide range of content options, including the ability to see outside the aircraft through a built-in exterior camera. Power outlets and USB ports will be installed in all seats to meet the needs for various devices. JAL’s next-generation inflight Wi-Fi service will be also available. Additional details for cabin specifications and official presentation will be unveiled in Tokyo on June 20.

“This is a very beautiful summary for our 50th anniversary: Japan Airlines finally becomes an Airbus user,” said Christian Scherer, Airbus’ chief commercial officer.