Allegiant orders 50 Boeing 737 jets as part of fleet modernization programme

Allegiant has ordered CFM International LEAP-1B engines to power up to 100 Boeing 737 MAX 7 and 737 MAX 8 aircraft ©Boeing

Allegiant Air (Allegiant), which currently operates an all-Airbus fleet of 35 A319-100s and 86 A320-200s has placed its first substantial order for brand new jets, with Boeing, for a combined total of 50 737-7 and 737-8-200 variants, with an option for a further 50 jets. Delivery will begin in 2023 and carry on through 2024 and 2025, which will allow Allegiant to retire aging jets and replace them with new jets, while also allowing the carrier to expand its fleet by a planned 10% annually.

Previously, Allegiant had grown its fleet of aircraft through the purchase of second-hand jets from other carriers, notably easyJet and Iberia from which it acquired several A319-100s and A320-200s respectively. It was not until 2015 that it purchased its first brand-new aircraft, an Airbus A320-200. The reason for the switch to Boeing aircraft as part of the carrier’s fleet modernization programme was explained by Maurice J. Gallagher, Jr., Allegiant chairman and CEO:

“Our approach to fleet has always been opportunistic and this exciting transaction with Boeing is no exception. While the heart of our strategy continues to centre on previously owned aircraft, the infusion of up to 100 direct-from-the-manufacturer 737s will bring numerous benefits for the future – including flexibility for capacity growth and aircraft retirements, significant environmental benefits and modern configuration and cabin features our customers will appreciate.”

Compared to its current fleet of Airbus jets, Allegiant anticipates being able to reduce fuel use by 20%. The smaller 737-7 offers low operating costs which help to mitigate economic risk, while the larger-capacity 737-8-200 provides added revenue potential and is the perfect size for the ultra-low-cost carrier. In addition to a partnering between Allegiant and Boeing on entry-into-service support, with the Boeing jets being powered by CFM LEAP 1-B engines, Allegiant has signed a 12-year exclusive maintenance agreement with CFM for the LEAP engine fleet, which will also bring support for the existing Airbus fleet.

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