Alaska Airlines announced plans to broaden its fleet by adjusting its current 737 MAX 9 aircraft order, according to a recent company update made public on March 2, 2022.
The airline remains focused on expanding its fleet with 145 MAX jets. However, aiming to meet specific market requirements by enhancing aircraft size and capability, the carrier now expects to add only 70 737-9s. The remainder of the order will now be made up of 60 larger capacity Boeing 737-10s and 10 longer-range 737-8s.
“This is a further step in our drive toward a single fleet featuring Boeing aircraft and CFM engines,” said senior vice president of fleet, finance, and alliances at Alaska Airlines, Nat Pieper.
Alaska Airlines decided to modify its original agreement with Boeing for 145 firm orders and options for Boeing 737-9 MAX aircraft with the expectation of maximizing revenue opportunities by adding greater capacity as well as simultaneously reducing unit costs.
As of March 3, 2022, the airline had already taken delivery of 14 Boeing 737-9 planes. The remaining 131 aircraft are currently on order, data from Planespotters.com indicates.
The company expects to take delivery of the first 737-8 jets during the second half of 2023, while the first 737-10 planes are expected to join the carrier’s fleet in early 2024.
All three models of the Boeing 737 MAX family have several key common features, including the same engines and flight deck features as well as similar engine and aircraft components.