26 years of the Boeing 737-800 | Aviation


The Boeing 737-800 is one of the most popular and recognizable narrowbody aircraft in the world. First flown on July 31, 1997, the aircraft has become a prolific player in the fleets of the 5 largest US airlines and the backbone of low cost fleets in Europe and beyond. As of this year, there are over 4,200 737-800s in service.

Boeing 737-800 N737BX on the ground in Seattle following its first flight on July 31 1997.

Let’s use Flightradar24 to take a closer look at what those aircraft were up top in the last week of July 2023. 

Who operates the most 737-800 flights?

We tracked 4,502 individual 737-800 aircraft across passenger, cargo, BBJ, and government use from 24-30 July 2023. 

Who were the top airlines?

  1. Ryanair (FR) – 16,291 flights
  2. American Airlines (AA) – 7,822 flights 
  3. Southwest Airlines (WN) – 7,740 flights
  4. United Airlines (UA) – 3,375 flights
  5. China Southern Airlines (MU) – 3,369 flights

Where are the most 737-800’s operated?

On a city basis, Beijing, Dallas, London, Chicago and Tokyo saw the highest levels of 737-800 traffic from 24-30 July. Taking a closer look at airports, we can see that Dallas Fort Worth (DFW) was the most popular individual destination served by the type. 

  1. Dallas Fort Worth (DFW) – 1,687 arrivals
  2. Tokyo Haneda Airport (HND) – 1,409 arrivals
  3. Antalya Airport (AYT) – 1,353 arrivals
  4. London Stansted Airport (STN) – 1,281arrivals
  5. Kunming Changshui Airport (KMG) – 1,277 arrivals

Developing a winner

The development of the Boeing 737 Next Generation (NG) program began in November 1993, with the 737-800 being the first variant to be developed. Boeing recognized an increasing demand for more fuel-efficient and reliable narrow-body aircraft from airlines seeking to modernize their fleets and retire older types. The existing 737 Classic series proved the perfect basis for such an aircraft, meaning Boeing could avoid the costs and time required in developing a clean sheet design. 

The new 737-800 featured a stretched fuselage…

read more www.flightradar24.com

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