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Celebrating LAX's First 787 Flight: LAN 603 Non-Stop to Santiago, Chile

January 11, 2013 at 1:50 PM | by | ()

While this week hasn't exactly been all sunshine and rainbows for airlines flying their Boeing 787 Dreamliners around the world, last week sure was. On January 2, we stepped onboard aircraft CC-BBC, the gleaming new third 787 delivered to South American airline LAN for what would be a monumental inaugural flight, non-stop from Los Angeles-LAX to Santiago, Chile-SCL.

Our ticket read seat 1L. As the first row, first window on the right, that's practically a cockpit jumpseat (though our legroom and recline would be better). This would be more than a first 787 flight from LAX; it would be our own, personal first 787 flight. To say we were psyched is a gross understatement. The energy and optimism rippled through the line of waiting passengers in all classes, holding all types of tickets, as a special party for the full flight began at the gate.

Balloons and bunting? Check. A ribbon to cut with comically oversize, novelty scissors? Check. LAX and LAN officials stating how excited they are (and noting that LAN beat United by one day to have the first 787 service here)? Check. Local news teams sneaking onboard to shoot their evening segments while kicking back in business class seats? Check. A water cannon salute of the plane after we boarded, pushed back and headed to the runway? Check.

There were also cookies.

So why was it sooooo special? Well, LAN Airlines was the fourth carrier to receive a Dreamliner, but first in the Americas. With the launch of LA 603 & 602 non-stops to/from SCL, they tack on a few more records, as this inaugural was...
· The first 787 scheduled service from LAX
· LAN's first 787 route to North America
· The first 787 service overall between North and South America
· The first non-stop service from LAX to Santiago, Chile (a new route that'll operate 3x/week, Wednesday-Friday-Sunday)
· The completion of LAX's trifecta of new aircraft types, as the airport now has A380s, B747-8s and B787s on the tarmac

This flight is actually on sale with just-released New Year specials on LAN. Flying LAX-SCL is $899 per person including taxes and fees, if you book before January 28 and fly between February 1 and June 30, 2013.

Stay tuned for our hour-by-hour breakdown of what exactly happens onboard a 10-hour LAN 787 flight. We promise more cookies.

Taking off from LAX on the LAN 603 Inaugural from Jaunted on Vimeo.

Just after arrival at SCL, in the wee morning hours

Disclosure: We were onboard the inaugural as a guest of LAN Airlines, but all jet lag, photos and opinions are strictly our own.

[Photos: Cynthia Drescher/Jaunted]

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