flyadeal – a low-cost carrier based out of Saudi Arabia (as well as a subsidiary of Saudi Arabian Airlines) has struck a deal with Boeing for a fleet replacement – with airline opting for the Boeing 737 MAX family
The airline has signed for 30 firm orders of the Boeing 737 MAX 8, with 20 options for additional aircraft. At list price (because everyone pays that), the order is valued at US$5.9 billion.
The airline currently operates services within Saudi Arabia, with a fleet of 9 Airbus A320 family aircraft. This will be swapped for the Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft. It’s planned to use these aircraft to support growth domestically, but also potentially developing international connectivity.
Currently, the airline operates out of a base at Jeddah, connecting to Riyadh, Jeddah, Dammam, Qassim, Tabuk, Gizan, Madinah and Abha.
The planes will be deployed in a single-class 189 seater configuration.
Director General of Saudi Arabian Airlines, His Excellency Eng. Saleh bin Nasser Al-Jasser said,
“The demand for air transport services in the domestic market of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has grown exponentially. A new brand, with a fresh identity focused on low-fares, flyadeal has brought to the market a new choice – which has been received very positively.”
“The low-fares airline will continue to expand rapidly, and the addition to the fleet aligns well with flyadeal’s target to grow its presence in the domestic market and cover new markets outside of Saudi Arabia.”
On the Boeing side Ihssane Mounir, senior vice president of Commercial Sales & Marketing
“flyadeal has opened up more affordable flights to millions of travelers and we are honored that the airline has chosen the 737 MAX to power its exciting expansion,”
“We have supplied commercial airplanes to Saudi Arabia for more than 70 years and we look forward to finalizing this agreement and delivering advanced jetliners to flyadeal in the years ahead.”
A flyadeal for Boeing, leaving Airbus pondering
Whist the Boeing 737 MAX 8 promises 12 more seats and 8% lower cost than the current A320 aircraft used, Airbus will be licking its wounds from this battle from what was an Airbus customer defecting to Boeing.
Meanwhile for Boeing, it’s more aircraft to place on the production backlog of the popular 737 MAX
The narrow-body battle is one to keep a constant eye on – with both Airbus and Boeing trying to get more orders than the other. In turn, it’s driving innovation (with Airbus working on a proposed XLR, and Boeing moving to the larger 737 MAX 10 – as well as their clean-sheet middle of the market plane.
How this pans out in the future will as usual – be one to watch
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