Thai Airways International (THAI) accepted delivery of its first Boeing 777-300 today. Celebrating this event were Capt. Chusak Bhachaiyud, Thai Airways International executive vice president - Technical and Larry Dickenson, Boeing Commercial Airplanes senior vice president - Asia/Pacific Sales.
"This delivery is truly significant in that, even under the impact of the Asian economic crisis, THAI stays focused on the economic benefits this airplane will bring to our passengers and fleet operations," Bhachaiyud said.
THAI will call the airplane "Sriwanna," in honor of a now-retired THAI 747. The original Sriwanna was named by His Majesty, King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand.
The airplane's business class seats are equipped with personal computer power outlets, integrated telephones, and in-seat video systems. There also are nine cordless telephone handsets throughout the airplane and a Communication Center - equipped with a fax machine, table, and telephone - available to all passengers.
"We want our passengers to experience the utmost comfort and convenience in flying," Bhachaiyud commented. "That's why we incorporated these features into our first Boeing 777-300."
THAI configured its initial 777-300 to carry 388 passengers, including 49 in business class and the remainder in the economy section. The 777-300 can carry 394 passengers in a typical three-class configuration, 479 passengers in a typical two-class configuration, or as many as 550 passengers in an all-economy layout. The first THAI 777-300 is powered by Rolls-Royce Trent 892 engines.
The 777-300 has nearly the same passenger capacity and range capability as the 747-100/-200 models, but burns one-third less fuel and has 40 percent lower maintenance costs. The overall result for airlines is cash operating costs that are one-third less than early-model 747s.
THAI was one of four airlines to launch the 777-300 program at the 1995 Paris Air Show. To date, 28 customers worldwide have placed orders for 429 777s.