Boeing announced on Tuesday a second sales agreement for the 737 MAX after the aircraft was released again to fly. Alaska Airlines boosted the order for 737 MAX 9 jets with 23 more planes. As a result, it has a total of 120 aircraft ordered, including firm orders and options.
The Seattle-based airline is the 5th largest in the US and has been a loyal customer of the company. The carrier recently announced the sale of Airbus jets that it had incorporated after the purchase of Virgin America.
“We are extremely proud to be announcing this transformative agreement with Boeing,” said Brad Tilden, CEO of Alaska Air Group. “We believe in this airplane, we believe in our strong partnership with Boeing, and we believe in the future of Alaska Airlines and the incredible opportunities ahead as we climb our way out of this pandemic.”
Alaska had announced a first order for 23 737 MAX 9 jets in October 2012, but last month expanded the number by 13 units through leasing. With the new firm order, the company has 68 aircraft, in addition to 52 purchase options, 15 of them in the new agreement.
“Alaska Airlines has done a tremendous job of weathering the impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic, and is well positioned to return to its growth trajectory and strengthen its standing as one of the top U.S. airlines. With Alaska’s industry-leading reputation for safety, sustainability and customer service, we are honored they have chosen to invest in their future with a significant purchase of additional Boeing 737 airplanes,” said Stan Deal, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
The US airline’s 737 MAX 9 jets will be configured with 178 in three classes. According to Boeing, it is 20% more economical than the previous generation, currently operated by Alaska.
Back to service
After obtaining commercial service clearance in November, Boeing is restarting deliveries of more than 450 planes stored since March 2019 and also closing new deals. The first one was with Ryanair a few weeks ago, breaking a long period without selling a single plane.
In addition, the 737 MAX is gradually being used again on commercial flights. Gol was the first airline in the world to use them again and today it already has its entire fleet active. This week, Aeromexico followed the Brazilian airline and resumed flights with the Boeing jet. One of the next will be American Airlines, which scheduled the aircraft on flights next week.