It seems that the planned entry into service of the Boeing 737 MAX with Ryanair is taking further steps back, with additional delays announced in the airlines latest earnings news.
The airline noted in its results that the first Boeing 737 MAX-200 will not be delivered until September or October 2020. In addition, the change in requirements for the Boeing 737 MAX – which now stipulates the use of MAX simulators will slow down the delivery of backlogged aircraft.
The aircraft was meant to enter service with the airline during Summer 2019 – before the global grounding of the type after Lion Air crash.
Retain the faith, but it’s going to take time to get the benefits
Ryanair has faith in the type still it seem.. They believe that the aircraft is still a game-changer for its use, offering 4% more seats and 16% less fuel burn than their existing Boeing 737-800.
With the delay however, the cost savings that the Boeing 737 MAX-200 promise to deliver won’t arrive until the later part of the fiscal year 2021.
That has an impact on the airline plan to carry more than 200 million passengers per year target – with the airline expecting to break this in 2025-2026.
Another side to this is the human impact, with some winter bases being cut, with some crew redundancies in Spain, Germany and Sweden.
A fleet in flux
The Ryanair fleet is in flux as aircraft change hands across the group, with the Polish subsidiary Buzz taking on 32 aircraft – with plans to scale up 50 frames (43 for Ryanair flights, 7 for charter operations). Malta Air will take on up to 120 aircraft by Summer 2020 as it subsumes Ryanair’s French, German and Maltese bases.
The Lauda operation will increase its A320 fleet from 23 to 38 frames – even as the airline fights for traffic due to the fare-war that is happening at Vienna Airport (with Lufthansa Group causing merry chaos).
This leaves Ryanair DAC – which will shrink to a mere 360 Boeing 737 aircraft.
A need for the capacity
For Ryanair, the Boeing 737 MAX-200 is about carrying more passengers aboard its network. And it seems the extra space the 737 MAX-200 is the way they want to do that. With lofty aims of carrying 200 million passengers a year – the needs these aircraft.
But like the rest of the industry – it will have to wait until authorities clear the type to fly, as well as complete any simulator training
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