The first of the new generation Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners that constitute an important step in Turkish Airlines’ growth strategy joined the company’s fleet last month. The flag carrier launched a campaign on social media to name the aircraft and on the request of followers the aircraft was named “Maçka,” in memory of Eren Bülbül’s hometown. 

Previously, the first flight of the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner was scheduled from Istanbul to Antalya; however, in parallel with the campaign launched on social media, the aircraft’s first route was later changed to Trabzon. On July 8, 2019, the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner’s flight number TK-4900 that took off from Istanbul Airport carrying 300 passengers including Eren Bülbül’s family, families of martyrs, Turkish Airlines officials, parliamentarians, governors, mayors, and journalists landed in Trabzon. After the water salute upon arrival at the airport, the aircraft approached the apron. In the meantime, aircraft belonging to the Turkish Stars, the Turkish Air Force aerobatic team, took off from the airport. The Turkish Stars performed two flyover salutes over the Maçka aircraft.

Eren Bülbül, who lived in the Maçka district of Trabzon, informed security forces when he saw terrorists stealing food provisions on August 11, 2017, and the 15-year-old was martyred when gunfire was opened as he was showing security forces the house where the terrorists were hiding. The flag carrier named the new aircraft after the young martyr’s hometown. The flight crew of the aircraft that made its first flight to Trabzon, traveled to Maçka to visit Eren Bülbül’s family.  

“Glad to Have You Eren”

Turkish Airlines Chairman of the Board and the Executive Committee M. İlker Aycı said, “I would like to thank all our guests that participated in our social media poll to name the first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner of our fleet, and gave their support by saying #AdıErenOlsun (Name It Eren). We named our new aircraft Maçka after the hometown of our brave martyr Eren. Our first flight is to Trabzon. We will be visiting Eren together with his family. We carry our flag with pride; we fly for this nation. Glad to have you, Eren.”

“Maçka Will Fly to More Than 120 Countries Carrying Eren’s Message”

Turkish Airlines Chairman of the Board and the Executive Committee M. İlker Aycı added, “Today we are not just flying to a city and an airport. We are flying to Eren. Some of the guests on the aircraft are traveling there to visit Eren Bülbül’s grave. This campaign on social media reached a significant participation level. We showed that we were capable of uniting under our national values by uniting around a positive sentiment. We named the aircraft Maçka where our 15-year-old brother was martyred two years ago. Naturally, as a young boy he had dreams. Eren gave the best response to terrorists by standing up to them. And now we are saying ‘Glad to have you, Eren.’ Maçka will be flying all over the world, to more than 120 countries, in memory of you. And this aircraft will carry the same message to every country it flies.”

On this special flight, Eren’s mother Ayşe Bülbül expressed her emotions by saying, “I would like to thank everyone because they haven’t forgotten my son. May Allah be pleased with all those involved; I thank all of you. The last two years without him have been very difficult. It was really difficult, but Eren being remembered like this is such a special feeling.”

A Moving Announcement

As the aircraft was landing in Trabzon, Captain Öner Samyel’s deeply moved all passengers by his announcement. “Dear guests, we are now descending into Trabzon where Eren was born, grew up, and was bravely martyred. As the Turkish Airlines family, we want to say once more “Glad to have you, Eren!”

First Scheduled Flight Is to Antalya Following this very meaningful, special flight, the first domestic scheduled flights of the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, that will be carrying passengers to medium-haul destinations throughout the 2019 summer season, were to Antalya and its first international flights were to one of our new flight destinations, Bali/Denpasar. Among the flight destinations of the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner are London, Manchester, Dubai, Washington DC, New York, Atlanta, Mexico City, Cancun, Bali, Amsterdam, Delhi, Panama and Bogota.

Dreamliner Fleet Is Growing Turkish Airlines, which continues its growth strategy with new routes and new aircraft, placed an order for 30 Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft, 5 of which are optional. Six Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft that increase flight comfort with their new interior cabin design, comfortable seats and wide and dimmable passenger windows will be joining the fleet by the end of August. 

Other Articles from This Issue

Skylife Archive