Dutch airline Arke became the first carrier in the Netherlands to land a Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner Thursday.
The passenger jet arrived at Schipol Airport in Amsterdam after departing Paine Field in Everett, Wash., on Wednesday. The 787 is also assembled in North Charleston.
Arke, with an all-Boeing fleet, is part of TUI Travel PLC, the largest tourism group in the world. It's headquartered in England.
"The 787 Dreamliner is an excellent fit for our Dutch operations, and we are delighted to be the first carrier in the Netherlands to offer this product as part of our unique holiday experiences," said Elie Bruyninckx, CEO of TUI Netherlands. "Passengers traveling on Arke's 787 will appreciate the airplane's spacious interior, bigger windows and will arrive at their destination feeling refreshed, making it the perfect start to any holiday."
The technologically advanced airplane is made with composite materials that make up 50 percent of the primary structure, including the fuselage and wing. It also uses 20 percent less fuel than similar-sized airplanes.
"TUI Netherlands is a leading player in the Dutch holiday market, and the Dreamliner will play a key role in setting it apart from its competition by providing an unrivaled passenger experience," said Todd Nelp, vice president of European sales for Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
Arke will use the 787 on its service between Amsterdam and the islands of Curacao, Aruba and Bonaire in the Dutch Caribbean. The airplane is the first of three Dreamliners to join the carrier's fleet that also includes Boeing's Next-Generation 737s and 767-300ERs.
TUI Travel has ordered a total of 15 787-8s, of which six have been delivered and are currently in operation with three of the six airlines it operates; Thomson Airways in the United Kingdom, Jetairfly in Belgium and now Arke.
The other airlines TUI operates include Corsair International in France, TUIfly in Germany and TUIfly Nordic, serving Scandinavian countries.
Reach Warren L. Wise at 937-5524 or twitter.com/warrenlancewise.