Like Flying on an Airline, but Nicer
Boeing just unveiled the 717 Business Express, the
newest variant of the Boeing 717-200, in Geneva, Switzerland, at
EBACE 2003. Boeing is discussing the airplane with corporate
customers as a new business travel solution.
"The Boeing 717 Business Express is a new concept for
corporations to help deal with high-volume business travel," said
Thad Dworkin, sales director, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. "A
company with significant and regular employee movement between two
or more key business facilities would be a candidate for a 717
Business Express airplane."
The 717 Business Express is designed to provide corporate
employees with more productive space and improved use of travel
time compared to typical business travel. The airplane can be
configured to seat from 40 to 80 passengers in first- and/or
Additionally, the airplane can be equipped with airborne
workstations, meeting spaces, videoconferencing capability and full
broadband connectivity -- using Connexion by Boeing -- depending on
the needs of the owner.
"The key element here is optimizing capital, people and time,"
Dworkin said. "This airplane can save significant time in the
travel process, which will reduce many of the hard costs of air
travel -- air fare, hotels, food and entertainment -- as well as
the 'soft' costs -- time spent in transit, at terminals, waiting at
the gate, delays at baggage claim and waiting to get a taxi or
A key element of the 717 Business Express Program is a customer
support package that will be part of the airplane purchase.
Tailored to meet the needs of the corporate airplane operator, the
package will provide such features as training, field support, a
spares kit, ground-support equipment, emergency assistance and
warranty. An additional supplemental support package also is
available as an option.
Long range, convenient airports...
Its original design is easily augmented with additional fuel
tanks that give the airplane up to 3,140 nautical miles (5,815
kilometers) while carrying 60 passengers. The ability of the 717 to
use smaller, less-congested, secondary airports also is important,
allowing for lower airport use fees and enabling the business
traveler to avoid the crowds of primary hub airports.
Through the highly successful Boeing Business Jet (BBJ), Boeing
has gained a strong understanding of the corporate aviation market
that can easily be applied to the 717 Business Express. The new
program complements the BBJ within the market segment by providing
an additional solution that meets the customer need for domestic