After two and a half months of scheduled service, All Nippon Airways' (ANA) Boeing 787 fleet has achieved a dispatch reliability of 96.3% as it plans to expand Japanese domestic operations and begin its first scheduled international routes.

ANA entered the 787 into regular service on Japanese domestic routes on 1 November and have operated two 80-90min flights each day.

The reliability of the first two 787s delivered in September and October 2011, and joined by a third on 4 January, nearly matches the ANA group-wide fleet reliability of 96.5%.

The airline said its load factors on the new jet have reached 88% on its routes between Tokyo Haneda airport and Hiroshima and Okayama, compared to 72.2% on all services between the two cities, up from 67.7% a year earlier.

ANA expects to carry its 100,000th 787 passenger on 15 January on flight 686, connecting Hiroshima with Tokyo Haneda airport.

Boeing confirmed ANA took contractual delivery of its fourth 787 on 12 January and the fifth is expected to follow on 13 January, said programme sources.

The airline will begin its first international service between Haneda and Beijing on 14 January, followed by services on 17 and 18 January and its first long-haul flight between Tokyo Narita airport and Frankfurt, Germany on 21 January.

Domestic operations are set to expand on the Okayama and Hiroshima routes on 13 January, moving from one to two flights per day.

ANA will begin Haneda flights to Yamaguchi Ube and Itami (Osaka) from 23 January.

After the commencement of its 2012 fiscal year on 1 April, ANA will add Haneda to Matuyama and Narita to Seattle and San Jose, California.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news