WestJet Reveals New 787 Interiors & Livery

Filed Under: Other Airlines

Update: See here for my full review of WestJet’s 787-9 business class.

Last May, WestJet placed an order for up to 20 Boeing 787-9s (10 firm orders and 10 options), which was a huge move for the Canadian carrier. Otherwise WestJet’s fleet primarily consists of 737s, as well as four 767s that they use primarily for transatlantic flights. Expanding their fleet with brand new Boeing 787s is a big next step for the carrier.

The airline is expected to get their first Boeing 787-9 in early 2019, and today has revealed the details of the interiors, including them introducing business class for the first time. Furthermore, WestJet has also announced a rebranding, including the introduction of a new livery. They cover all of this on a dedicated WestJet 787 website.

Before I share my thoughts, here’s a video about the new 787:

And here’s what WestJet’s CEO says about the new planes:

“The introduction of Boeing’s 787-9 Dreamliner, a state-of-the-art aircraft, is the dawn of a new era for WestJet and the next step in our transformation to a global network airline. The updated livery is modern and dynamic while the interior is world-class, distinctly Canadian and uniquely WestJet. Both reflect WestJet’s transition from a regional airline in 1996 to a new era of connecting Canada with the world and bringing the world to Canada.”

WestJet 787 interior

WestJet 787s will be in a three cabin configuration. It almost looks like an exact copy of Air Canada’s 787, minus the finishes.

Business class will consist of B/E Aerospace Super Diamond reverse herringbone seats, which are exactly the same ones that Air Canada has. Business class will feature touchscreen service, on-demand dining, and turndown service.

Premium economy will be in a 2-3-2 configuration, and will feature a premium menu, a self-serve social area, and more space to relax.

Economy will be in a 3-3-3 configuration, and will feature entertainment and power ports at every seat.

The exact seat counts haven’t yet been revealed, though as a point of comparison, Air Canada’s 787-9s have 298 seats, including 30 business class seats, 21 premium economy seats, and 247 economy seats.

The above images from WestJet suggest four rows of business class and four rows of premium economy. Those could easily fit between doors one and two on the 787, in which case they could have a much bigger economy section than Air Canada has. However, the above are just renderings, so it’s also possible that they’ll have a different configuration.

New WestJet livery

WestJet has also revealed a new livery as part of their 787 launch, which they describe as follows:

The font has been updated to Bliss, give the WestJet wordmark a more uniform and current style, while retaining the Maple Leaf symbol in a more contemporary and bold look. The logo also now uses a single color to soften the regional emphasis on “west.”

In addition to the updated stylized Maple Leaf on the aircraft tail, another nod to WestJet’s heritage is in the form of the Canadian flag appearing at the front of the aircraft. The new livery will also marry both of Canada’s official languages with, “The Spirit of Canada” appearing on one side of the aircraft and the French translation, “L’esprit du Canada” on the other, both extending across the middle of the aircraft fuselage.

This new livery will appear on all newly delivered jets, starting with a Boeing 737 MAX-8 being delivered in June. Then over the coming years WestJet will repaint existing planes with the new livery.

I think the new livery looks great. It’s sleek and modern, and is more of a refresh than a total transformation, which I like.

Bottom line

WestJet’s new 787s look great, and it’s nice to see that they’re going for a premium configuration, including an industry leading business class, which I look forward to trying. Their new livery looks nice as well. I can’t wait to see what routes they end up using the 787s for. They’ve said that they’ll consider service to Asia and South America.

What do you think of WestJet’s new 787s?

  1. I have to wonder if this is a prelude to them deepening their relationship with Delta and perhaps joining the transatlantic JV with Virgin Atlantic and AF/KLM, or maybe even Skyteam itself. It would definitely help to fill a glaring hole in their network.

  2. Going to be way more seats on board than you account for. The J cabin is only 16 seats (4 rows) and PremY is also 4 rows so 28 seats. That all fits in the “A” zone between the first two doors. That should leave room for closer to 275ish Y seats on board.

  3. the pics pretty much show the number of rows J and Y+ will have, 4 rows of each, IMO. The rest should be Y seating. I’m sure they will pack on more than 298 seats in this plane since AC has a much larger J cabin.

  4. I just took my first WestJet flight (as part of my ex-Canada EK ticket) and was thoroughly impressed even on the 737. These new planes look great! I would gladly take them if convenient.

  5. Jaw drop. As someone who remembers when Westjet started as a fledgling 3-plane upstart discount carrier, I did a double-take when I saw the photos of the reverse herringbone business class and new livery. I knew they had expanded to European flights and had even introduced a ‘club class’, but had no idea they were going the whole nine yards to offering a full long-haul business class. Wow!

  6. There’s an odd sentence in there Lucky:

    “Premium economy will be in a 2-3-2 economy”

    You may want to tweak that.

  7. So they pretty much just copied Alaska’s new livery, Qantas’ slogan and even the font, and Air Canada’s seats?

  8. I’m getting serious Qantas vibes from the livery, and not just because of the “Spirit of Canada” slogan emblazoned on the side. The font for WestJet looks similar and it appears the coloring extends from the tail down along the rear of the fuselage is proportioned similarly – though that’s probably pretty standardized. Though the arrow/maple leaf combo isn’t really the same shape, the white-on-bright-coloring gives a similar impression to the red ‘roo of QF. When coupled with the white body elsewhere, I’d venture the uninitiated could think they may be part of a parent airline, like Cathay Pacific/Dragon. Overall it looks great and I think they did a fantastic job both inside and out. I’m looking forward to trying them out.

  9. Wow that new livery is fantastic, I love it!

    I’ve had a mixed experience with WestJet. On a round trip itinerary LGA-YYZ recently, my flight out was canceled, ended up flying Delta from JFK as I was on a DL ticket anyway, but my flight back was great.

  10. They have a partnership with Qantas, wondering if there’s a leaning to join oneworld.

  11. Looks like a big improvement over their ancient 767s, and business class looks comfortable.

    Have to wonder what their price point will be – how does this square with their low-cost model?

  12. If you live in Toronto (the other “west”) you will find the prices very competitive. If, unfortunately, yo u live west of Thunder Bay you can expect about 10% surcharge or more over Air Canada or AS.

  13. The guy they keep coming back to in the video in business class is addicted to his phone. You’re in pajamas in a lie flat bed, put it down buddy!

  14. They have just about copied Qantas in every way and they have definitely picked up “spirit of Canada” from Qantas’s “Spirit Of Australia” though QF and WS are partners so…?

  15. When you put pics side by side with a QF Dreamliner, there are definitely close similarities. But that’s a great thing – looks great! Fingers crossed they join oneworld!

  16. Are they moving from LCC to full service? Cause their eco flights to UK are painful in such a tight config with no food at all. Maybe a hybrid with super basic eco and full on business class as well.

  17. So a new Canadian kid is trying to be the next big Canadian airline. A copy cat? Well, it is a small industry
    ,since Canadian Airlines was gone I could not remember seeing a second international airline apaet from Air Canada. Regarding the very similar livery, seats etc. Honestly, the C seats has to be leading in order to compete decently. About the livery, everyone has its own perception of taste and very well made concept.
    So with be a competition to AC? Probably if they pull together properly. A lot her already expressed their desire to have Westjet in a specific alliance (meaning already counting those redemption miles for their C trip, LOL)
    One is for sure it will be easier for Westjet to have good partners. It will be playing with big players next year in the big league..it is a cut throat business..only the best survive

  18. Nice paint jobs don’t make up for lousy service. Have flown WestJet twice in the last year and a half and both times felt like part of a herd of cattle on the way to be slaughtered. Also, cabin crew not even close to being nice. Last flight the male flight attendant walked by and said “put you seat up bub”. Have to admit, that still makes me smile, but also shows how little respect the crew has for the passengers.

  19. “The Spirit of Canada”
    Very creative slogan. I wonder hw they were ever able to come up with something so or original?

    But in all seriousness it’s amazing to see WestJet introduce a true international business class.

  20. Canada has never been able to support two full-service airlines, and it unfortunately looks as though WestJet is going to stretch itself very thin trying to be everything to everyone, between this and Swoop. I really hope it works, because competition is needed in the Canadian aviation market, though I’m profoundly disappointed to just see WestJet making another carbon copy move of Air Canada, as opposed to trying to do something different. Their early success was entirely on differentiation and a combo of great service/price, but all of that seems to have died off as they’ve grown and just tried to become another legacy carrier.

    Their stock has dropped over 10% since they announced their Q1 results and all these plans, so clearly the market isn’t terribly excited about the news either, since they’re about to end their 10+ year run of profitability, all while other NA carriers are enjoy record profits.

  21. Air Canada has competition on the London runs from the likes of Westjet and Air Transat as young Canadians qualify for the two year ‘working visa’ UK allows Commonwealth citizens and they, and tourists on a budget (and a U.K. expat I know living in Canada) like to fly cheap.

    Air traffic control regularly routes the AC rivals over my house in England en route to Gatwick and I have often noted how old the Westjet 767s are. These new 787s look to be a big improvement (AC’s are tolerable in economy though their no-human-staff checkin at LHR is not) so hopefully legroom will be generous. For those nearer the front, Prem Economy and bizzo will do, if the price is right.

  22. WS is unlikely to join an alliance. They have a good thing going with codeshares across the board with everybody who isn’t StarAlliance and needs beyond origins or destinations in Canada (e.g. AA *and* DL though AA is wrapping, AF/KL *and* EK, CX *and* KE) so don’t expect them to pick a team. They’re more like AS in that regard. And the addition of a proper J will just improve those deals, allowing them to sell a real J seat from origin to destination in cooperation with pretty much anybody, plus pick up some high margin long haul business traffic ex YVR, YYC, YYZ, YUL that they see zero $ of today. It’s a big change from their past for sure, but I get it.

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