More 787 Dreamliners flock to Bay Area + Loss of LAN

Norwegian will fly a brand new Boeing 787 Dreamliner between Oakland, Oslo and Stockholm next year.

Norwegian will fly a brand new Boeing 787 Dreamliner between Oakland, Oslo and Stockholm next year.

The Bay Area has several Boeing 787 Dreamliners headed our way in coming months.

Today, Norwegian Air Shuttle, the Scandinavian low-fare juggernaut, announced that it would add nonstop Boeing 787 Dreamliner flights to Oakland from both Oslo and Stockholm starting next May.

Premium Economy seats on Norwegian

Premium Economy seats on Norwegian

Nonstops between Oakland and Oslo will run three times per week (Mon,Wed, Fri); Oakland-Stockholm flights will run two times per week (Tues, Sat).

Norwegian, the third largest low-fare carrier in Europe says that it can offer fares as low as $236 each way (all in) due to the lower operation costs of the new 787, eight of which it has on order from Boeing.

However, upon checking briefly for Oakland-Oslo flights in May 2014 at, I could only find the $236 economy fare for the Oakland-Oslo portion. The cheapest fare for the Oslo-Oakland run is $357.50, for a total of $600.50. Not bad, but not $236 each way as promoted in Norwegian’s press materials.

Economy class seating on Norwegian

Economy class seating on Norwegian

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Fares for summer travel (2014) are in the $1000 roundtrip range. Premium economy fares are around $975 each way, or about $2000 round trip.

On Norwegian’s new Dreamliner, premium economy (38 seats) is configured 2-3-2 with larger cradle style seats that recline, but do not go completely flat. All leather coach seats (259) are laid out 3-3-3, with individual seatback video, and touchscreen snack ordering, similar to what we’ve seen on Virgin America.

According to Seatguru, Norwegian’s premium economy seats are 19 inches wide with 46 inches of pitch. Economy class seats are narrow, at 17.2 inches with the standard 31-32 inches of pitch.

Features of the 787: The Boeing 787 Dreamliner has much larger electrochromatic windows that dim like sunglasses if there’s a glare… they can also be electronically blacked out if you want to sleep. There’s mod LED lighting. It also has larger overhead bins. Because of the Boeing’s use of composite materials, cabin pressure can be set at about 6000 feet– most other aircraft are only able to set cabin pressure at about 8000 feet– Boeing says that on those long hauls, the pressure difference along with better ventilation will help reduce passenger discomfort and jet lag.

More 787’s in the wings…

Japan Airlines 787 now touching down at SFO

Over Labor Day weekend, Japan Airlines launched new 787 flights between SFO and Tokyo’s close in and convenient Haneda Airport, located just 30 minutes south of the center of town. Narita is located 90 minutes to the east.

As you know from previous BAT posts, ANA has a 787 flying between San Jose and Tokyo-Narita.

Starting next April, United will fly a 787 between SFO and Osaka-Kansai.

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Have you flown on a Boeing 787 Dreamliner yet? What did you think? Please leave your comments below. 

LAN inaugural Boeing 767  gets a water cannon salute at SFO in 2010

Adios! LAN inaugural Boeing 767 gets a water cannon salute at SFO in 2010

LAN CANS SFO FLIGHTS. After a four-year run, LAN will suspend its nonstop Boeing 767 SFO-Lima flight on April 1, 2014. That’s too bad because the LAN flight was SFO’s only nonstop to South America. SF-based travelers hoping to stick with LAN can now connect with its flights from LAX. But I imagine most of us here in the Bay Area will likely fly United through Houston when headed to South America. Have you flown LAN to Lima or beyond? How was it? How do you get to South America? Please leave your comments below.

Chris McGinnis


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  • Ruppen

    I had a scheduled flight from Newark to Oslo, but rescheduled with another airline due to the consisting problems with dreamliner. I like Norwegian, but they are getting much heat due to technical problems with the dreamliner.

  • Ted Crilly

    I’ve just returned from Lima, flying economy class with LAN in both directions. Service on outward journey from SFO in a 767 was probably better than that from traditional US airlines. The return flight from Lima was through LAX and on the new 787 Dreamliner. And having now flown on this new plane I’m wondering what all the fuss and hype is about. Yes, the windows are noticeably bigger, the overhead bins are slightly larger, but the increased cabin pressure and supposedly quieter cabin wasn’t noticeable to me. I was equally uncomfortable, and got as much rest and sleep on this long flight as I do on almost every other long flight, i.e. none.
    The comprehensive in-flight entertainment system was very nice, but this is not unique to the 787. Same with the new and clean interior. Interiors of all newly refurbished planes are nice.
    While it was nice to have the opportunity to fly on this much talked about plane, I was a little underwhelmed by the experience. When booking future flights, a 787 certainly isn’t going to persuade me more than price or overall journey time.

  • Brad

    Sad news about LAN. They should have reassigned the flight to Brazil; seems like that route would be in much greater demand.

    Also, Norwegian Air to Oakland?! I don’t see this flight succeeding; I can’t imagine how they will drum up demand on saturated Bay Area > Europe routes if SFO can’t keep a single flight to the entirety of South America.

  • SoLongLAN

    Last November, my wife had a horrible experience traveling from SFO on LAN through Lima to Sao Paulo, to then connect on TAM to her final destination of Sao Luis, her hometown in Brazil. The flight was about 5 hours late leaving SFO, and so the Sao Paulo connection in Lima was missed. But the worst part about it was the treatment she received in Lima. Apparently the airport does not operate 24/7, so the passengers making connections had to get their bags and leave the airport given the hour they arrived. Upon receiving her bags, one of the spinning canister wheels had been broken off each of her two large bags. Others had damaged luggage too, but LAN took no responsibility for any damage. Then my wife and others were escorted to a bus and taken on a 45 minute ride to a hotel. They get to the hotel and are told they have 20 minutes in their hotel room before they have to get back on the bus to return to the airport. WHAT?? I was shocked when I heard this story. Plus, upon return to the airport, my wife was treated like anyone else arriving at the airport that day and LAN even tried to get her to pay for the third checked bag again (we already paid $180 for it at SFO). Ultimately, my wife made it to Sao Luis, but will not be flying this LAN route again. Seeing it go is no loss to us.

    Going from the bay area to northern Brazil is never easy, but this story of my wife’s was the worst by an order of magnitude. Yes, no one died or was injured, we are just talking about horrible treatment and ridiculously poor customer service, with no compensation and no accountability from LAN. I was really surprised that this happened, since I’ve always heard great things about LAN. Oh well, not this time.
    I’ve flown through Dallas, Atlanta, Miami, Washington Dulles, Baltimore Washington and New York (JFK) to or from Brazil, and my wife has also taken the United route through Houston. Often, I prefer to get a separate ticket out of Miami or Washington and visit friends or family for a night or two and break up the long trip. It can also be quite inexpensive flying out of Miami, and once there was a special price to fly out of Baltimore Washington. Even with the cost of a coast to coast flight on top of the cost of the international flight, sometimes it is still hundreds of dollars less than a flight from SFO.
    I’d like to try the COPA route sometime either through LAX or Las Vegas through Panama City to Sao Paulo. The problem with this plan is the connection on TAM in Brazil has to be on a separate ticket, so that adds risk that we often don’t want to take.

  • Chris McGinnis

    Isn’t that what I said in the post?

  • Airport Guy

    JAL flies to Haneda from SFO, not to Narita

  • flybizz777

    First Class flyers…have to get use of non aisle seating in the UA business first as it is configured 2-1-2. PMUA config seating in first use to be all aisle access seating but overall the B787 bird is great!

  • Kacee

    I generally fly COPA from LAX to Panama City. From Panama, you can connect pretty much anywhere in South America.

  • brazilian_sf

    We flew LAN with our toddler to Brazil last December and it was a great flight. No other American airline would treat passenger with kids as well as LAN did. They came to us and asked us to board early, which is something that United and American are not doing anymore. Our toddler got a crayon booklet to play with, and the crew was very good and supportive.

  • Nat

    Forgot to clarify, I’m taking American on the DFW route.

  • Nat

    Flying to Buenos Aires in December. Had the option of taking LAN to LIM then to EZE, except the times weren’t good. Instead I’m taking SFO to DFW to EZE.

  • FA

    I flew LAN a few years ago SFO-LIM and then extensively throughout South America and back. It was such a great experience. The food was good and service quite pleasant. The planes were newer and clean. The 9+ hour flight went by smoothly. It is really disappointing to hear that they’ll be discontinuing this route. It will make an already long flight that much longer.

  • Brian

    I flew inagural day of the 787 and my review can be found here.

  • Greg Quist

    I’ve done this, SFO/LIM/SFO. Losing non-stop LAN from SFO to LIM is a big loss for those of us going to that part of South America. That is a reasonably short flight, 9 & 1/2 hours, and the equipment and service are a cut above those of the US Carriers.

  • SKD

    I have flown on the 787 three times on ANA from Haneda to Frankfurt – all three times in Business Class. Of course ANA’s business class product on any aircraft is spectacular, but the 787, was the first aircraft in the ANA fleet, to have the “Business Cradle” staggered seat that is similar to a pod. Leaving that aside and focusing on the aircraft itself, besides the larger windows and no window shades, the interior of the 787 reminds me of that of a 767. On two of the flights, the flight attendants mentioned the galley was much smaller. Based on press reports, I realize of course that the cabin air is not as dry as on other aircraft, but honesltly I did not really feel a noticable difference. Overall I enjoyed the flights and definitely look forward to flying on a 787 again, but did not the aircraft to be so attractive that I would go out of my way to fly on a 787.

  • D2

    I flew LAN from SFO to Lima and then on to Santiago, Chile last year. Service was very good and the cabin was fresh and well-appointed. LAN feels very much like a European carrier. It made my flight home on American via Dallas feel very disappointing. Specifically, the plane was old and tired, and the crew seemed to not enjoy their jobs. What a buzzkill.

    It will be a real loss given this is the only non-stop to anywhere in South America. It is surprising that there aren’t any other non-stops to an important continent.

  • GreatGuy831

    LAN was the single worst Business Class international flight I have ever been on.
    I would GLADLY change in LAX or IAH to avoid LAN.
    It would have been great for the FAs if ihey didn’t hvae to deal wuith those peskey passengers.

  • kojobehr

    Flew United to Peru via Houston. Used LAN internally in Peru – they were great! New Airbus fleet, great crew, good technique with some high mountain approaches!

  • Carl E. David

    I flew on the 787 from SFO-IAH last December 2012. It was one of the best flying experiences I’ve had in a long time. I sat in Economy Plus window seat. Great legroom, great entertainment system, and plenty of space. I can’t wait to go on a 787 again!

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