Having already pushed the return to service date for the Boeing 737 MAX fleet back several times, American Airlines has announced that this will be extended, for a fourth time, through to November this year. Following the lead taken by American, United Airlines has followed by removing its MAX aircraft from their schedule for another two months. It is presumed that other operators like Southwest Airlines will also follow with a similar decision within the next few days.
For American Airlines, the extension will result in approximately 115 flights being removed from the schedule per day.
Despite the extension, American Airlines has publicly stated that it “remains confident” that the 737 MAX software updates, as well as “new training elements” that Boeing is developing in coordination with the airline’s union partners, “will lead to recertification of the aircraft this year.”
The airline currently has 24 737 MAX 8s within its fleet and another 76 on order which have yet to be completed.