Southwest orders 34 more 737 Max 7s in preparation for boost in travel demand

Southwest Airlines' Boeing 737-700s will be replaced by the new 737 MAX 7 aircraft ©AirTeamImages

Southwest Airlines (Southwest) has confirmed it has ordered a further 34 Boeing 737 MAX 7 aircraft with delivery scheduled for 2022. Including those already on order, this takes Southwest’s anticipated deliveries of the MAX 7 in 2022 to 234 aircraft.

Like many major airlines, Southwest sees the mass COVID-19 vaccination program and the easing of travel restrictions as sound reason to be optimistic with regard to increased travel demand after suffering heavy losses in 2020. On Tuesday, the American carrier altered its second-quarter average cash burn forecast to between US$1 million and US$2 million per day, as opposed to between US$1 million and US$3 million per day. Southwest also confirmed it anticipates revenue for June to improve on May’s figures through a combination of increased leisure passenger traffic and an uptick in prices. “Passenger demand and booking trends remain primarily leisure-oriented,” it said in a statement.

On May 25, Boeing reported that total orders and commitments for the 737 MAX for 2021 had passed 250 aircraft, following an order for 14 737 MAX 8s from SMBC Aviation Capital. This figure also included orders from Southwest, Alaska Airlines, and United Airlines.

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