57 Years Of Flight: The Recertified 737 MAX Has Flown 500,000+ Hours

The Boeing 737 MAX has flown for over half a million hours since returning to the skies late last year. Over 206,000 revenue flights have been operated by the jet so far since its return, equating to 57 years worth of flights when added together.

The Boeing 737 MAX has flown for over 57 years cumulatively since its return. Photo: Getty Images

It has been almost a year since the Federal Aviation Administration ungrounded the Boeing 737 MAX. While the jet was initially slow to return to the skies, the jet is really gathering pace now as more and more aviation authorities give it the green light. Most recently, India approved the type’s return, green lighting operations in another market.

Over 500,000 hours

It still seems to some as though the 737 MAX is fresh out of its grounding. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Speaking alongside the release of Boeing’s Q3 results yesterday, the company’s CEO, Dave Calhoun, commented,

“During the third quarter, we delivered 62 737s, the most since the first quarter of 2019. Since the FAA’s approval to return the 737 MAX to operations, we have delivered more than 195 737 MAX aircraft; and airlines have returned more than 200 previously grounded airplanes to service, safely flying more than 500,000 flight hours.”

Boeing 737 MAX, Deliveries, Recertification
Southwest has been the type’s top user since its return. Photo: Getty Images

More MAX flights each month

The MAX’s return to service has seen a steady increase in flights month on month. Indeed, since the jet returned to the skies, the number of flights operated by the type only fell once from August to September.

Boeing revealed that to the end of September, over 206,000 MAX flights had been completed. According to aviation data experts Cirium, some 40,717 flights are planned with the type during November, with even more scheduled in December. Twenty-three airlines had 737 MAX planned for more than 1,000 flights in the past year, from Air Canada to WestJet.

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By far, the most prolific user of the MAX so far is Southwest Airlines, which has operated almost 60,000 flights with the type. Other airlines with more than 10,000 flights of the kind include Air Canada (10,801), Turkish Airlines (11,927), Aeromexico (13,039), Gol (14,929), United Airlines (26,097), and American Airlines (34,220).

Boeing 737 MAX, Return To Service, Hours Flown
The number of MAX flights has been steadily growing month on month. Data: Cirium

It seems as though the grounding hasn’t discouraged airlines from 737 MAX orders either. Alongside a considerable number of monthly flights being operated by the jet, demand for new jets from the program also remains strong. Calhoun added,

“Demand also remains strong, and we have achieved eight straight months of positive net orders, largely driven by the 737. To meet this demand, we’re now producing at a rate of 19 airplanes per month, and plan to steadily increase that rate to 31 per month in early 2022.”

Have you flown on a Boeing 737 MAX since its return? Where did you come from, where did you go? Let us know in the comments below!


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