MIAMI – Continuing in its drive to renew and extend its fleet, Alaska Airlines (AS) has exercised an option for 12 additional Boeing 737-9, thus transforming them into firm orders to be made available in 2023 and 2024.
The total order, both firm and under option, stands at 93 aircraft out of which five are currently in service. This is part of the restructured agreement, passed with Boeing in December 2020, covering the acquisition of 68 Boeing 737-9 during the period going from 2021 to 2024 plus options for an additional 52 of the type for delivery between 2023 and 2026.
During 2021, AS has exercised 25 options, including the 13 during the month of May, and is adding an additional 25 options to make for the ones already turned into firm orders. The carrier’s Boeing 737 MAXs are meant to replace the Airbus A320 inherited from the take-over of Virgin America (VX) in 2016.
The configuration of AS’ Boeing 737-9 is set to carry a total of 178 passengers with a distribution of 16 in First Class, 24 in Premium, and 136 in the main cabin. The configuration allows what AS claims to be “the best premium legroom of any other US airline.” AS will offer “West Coast-inspired” meals in First Class and the availability of pre-orders for fresh food items.
Additionally, passengers will have at their disposal inflight internet connection or satellite WiFi along with a choice of in-flight entertainment with the availability of more than 1,000 movies or hows to be streamed, at no cost, directly on personal devices.
|Original Firm Order||12||31||13||12||68|
|May Option Exercise||–||–||9||4||13|
|August Option Exercise||–||–||10||2||12|
Comments from alaska Airlines
Nat Pieper, AS Senior Vice President Fleet, Finance and Alliances commented on the new fleet addition by stating, “We are excited to accelerate Alaska’s growth, building on the solid financial foundation that enabled us to weather the pandemic, these aircraft are a prudent, long-term investment in our business that we can make while simultaneously maintaining our strong balance sheet.”"The planes are exceeding our expectations – from how quiet the engines run to the greater range they provide – and our guests love them." Nat Pieper, Alaska Airlines Senior Vice President Fleet, Finance and Alliances Click To Tweet
Pieper also praised Boeing by indicating that the plane makers “continue to be a terrific partner for Alaska. We began flying our first 737-9s this past spring, and we’re extremely pleased with the operational, financial, and environmental performance of the aircraft.”
Alaska Airlines, as the newest member of the Oneworld alliance, will be able to offer its customers over 1,000 destinations all over the world while earning or redeeming miles accrued with the AS’ Mileage Plan on more than 20 partner airlines.