So its finally announced…the mighty 777 is coming to Leeds Bradford Airport
After many months of speculation, it’s finally been announced that Pakistan International Airlines are upgrading the aircraft on the Islamabad-Leeds-Islamabad service. Yes, the giant Boeing 777 will be coming to Leeds Bradford International Airport. Firstly, for those of you not familiar with aircraft sizes, below is a comparison. This is an image by Erwin taken at Amsterdam showing a Boeing 737 (a type currently operated by Jet2.com out of Leeds Bradford Airport) waiting for departure clearance closely followed by a Boeing 777 of Dutch airline KLM. As you can see that size difference is quite noticeable. The following is the press release from Pakistan International Airlines
Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has announced the introduction of Boeing 777 operations on their non-stop services from Leeds Bradford Airport (LBA) to Islamabad.
This larger aircraft, renowned for its comfort and spaciousness, will offer enhanced cabin facilities providing 35 business class seats and 294 in economy. Passengers in both economy and business class will benefit from increased leg room and a wide selection of refreshments from lights snacks to delicious meals.
Comprehensive in-flight entertainment with the latest films, music and games will also be available. PIA has introduced the Boeing 777 aircraft due to the high demand from travellers in Bradford and the surrounding Yorkshire region who want to fly to and from Pakistan from their local airport. The airline will introduce the aircraft on the existing twice weekly LBA schedule on a Wednesday and Saturday. Tony Hallwood, Commercial Director at LBA, said: “We have been working closely with the local community and businesses to introduce Boeing 777 operations at LBA. “We are now delighted that we have been able to secure this important PIA Boeing 777 flagship service to meet the growing demand from both the Yorkshire region as well as the airline’s customers in Islamabad”
Pakistan International Airline’s Manager at Leeds Bradford, Muhammad Shafique added: “This is excellent news for Leeds Bradford and the entire region that we serve, confirming our confidence in LBA’s status as Yorkshire’s premier international gateway for our customers. With the upgraded facilities available on the Boeing 777 for both business and leisure travel, alongside a competitive fare, we are confident that more Yorkshire passengers will decide to fly with PIA.”.
So there you have it, there has been so many comments around the airport community regarding this, from people saying it will never happen to others stating it wont fit and where will they park it. There are lots of questions that spring to mind, all of which would have been covered in detail by the airline and the airport. In the end, the press release has been issued and I am confident that this would not have happened without confirmation from the airline that they were committed to doing so. A simple check on the PIA website backs up the data on the press release. So, the 13th March 2013 is the first operational due date for the aircraft. I am sure I wont be the only one at the airport that afternoon to witness this arrival. Below is a size comparison chart showing the Boeing 777 sat next to an Airbus A330 (which I will add has been in LBA before), unfortunately there is no Boeing 747 on this chart. That would have given a better comparison
Just in case it’s too small to read, the 777 is second from the right. A few years ago, Monarch Airlines operated an Airbus A330 in to Leeds on a trooping flight to Germany. The Airbus A330 on the chart is to the left of the 777 and as you can see doesn’t appear to be too much different in size. A photograph I took on the very day the Monarch Airbus A330 came in to Leeds is shown below
So, only time will tell. I firmly believe it will happen. Let’s just wait and see. Thank you for reading, please feel free to add any comments or thoughts…
Posted on February 8, 2013, in Aviation and tagged a330, airbus, islamabad, landing, LBA, leeds bradford airport, monarch, PIA 777, speculation, tony hallwood, wide body, yeadon. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.