To survive the Covid-19 crisis, the TUI Group has sought a new use for its Boeing 787 Dreamliners: taking cruise passengers to boarding ports with charter flights.
TUIfly Belgium will use one such aircraft this winter to offer full charter flights from Düsseldorf to feed both its own TUI and third-party cruises. A TUI spokesperson confirms that a very selected number of flights have been offered to cruise lines for “the beginning of the winter season, on select days and for a limited period of time.” No contracts have been signed though.
The Dreamliners have often remained on the ground since the outbreak of the pandemic, as the health situation has not allowed them to fulfil their mission: to cover long-distance flights to vacation destinations such as Cancun (Mexico) or Punta Cana (Dominican Republic). Already last June, the financial director of TUI Group, Sebastian Ebel, had explained that its German airline was abandoning its initial intention to fly long-haul with Boeings 787 Dreamliner.
(Article updated on 22 September at 14:00 ith further information received from TUI Group in Germany)