Dubai-based carrier flydubai has revealed that it plans to receive 20 Boeing 737 MAX planes throughout the course of 2022. The incoming deliveries will see the airline’s fleet of MAX planes almost double by the end of the year, while the overall fleet will grow by around a third from its current size of nearly 60 jets.
Following the Boeing 737 MAX’s return to service over a year ago, airlines are once again able to take deliveries of the plane. According to data from ch-aviation.com, Boeing delivered 329 737 MAX aircraft during 2021. Of these, flydubai took delivery of nine, including one with the carrier’s new business class cabin.
Growing the MAX fleet
By November 2021, flydubai’s CEO Ghaith al Ghaith told Simple Flying that the airline had already fully recovered from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. While Omicron has created a hiccup for airlines, the general trend seems to be that aviation’s recovery will continue moving forwards.
In order to assist with recovery and growth, flydubai is looking to grow its fleet. As an all Boeing 737 customer, the MAX was the obvious choice for the airline when the order was placed. Despite the type’s grounding, the airline remains committed to it.
— Dubai Media Office (@DXBMediaOffice) January 3, 2022
According to data from ch-aviation.com, the airline has outstanding orders for 163 more MAXs, meaning that the 20 delivered this year would make up just 12% of outstanding orders. These orders will see the airline receiving more MAX 8s, the standard MAX jet. However, 50 of the much larger MAX 10 have also been ordered by the carrier.
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As the fleet currently stands, flydubai has 34 of the older Boeing 737-800 aircraft. This is accompanied by three Boeing 737 MAX 9 aircraft and a further 30 737 MAX 8 planes.
Happy with the MAX
When Simple Flying caught up with flydubai’s CEO at last year’s Dubai Airshow, Al Ghaith remarked,
“We find [the MAX] very good… There were no issues as all… In my humble opinion, because this aircraft is actually the most scrutinized airplane ever I think that people have that in the back of their minds. Maybe that helped get this over the line because people are comfortable on the MAX.”
At the time, Al Ghaith told Simple Flying that the airline was expecting around five more 737 MAXs to be delivered by the middle of June this year. It could be that deliveries are heavily weighted towards the end of 2022 or that the delivery schedule has moved forwards slightly. It could also be a mix of both possibilities. Regardless, at the time, Al Ghaith told Simple Flying,
“We are very confident and very happy that the MAX is back and that we’re taking more.”
How many Boeing 737 MAXs do you think will be delivered this year? Let us know what you think and why in the comments!