Flyadeal has announced its decision to cancel its order for 30 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft, in favour of the Airbus A320neo.
Originally signed for in December, the order for 30 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft also included purchase rights for 20 more; this deal was worth around $5.9 billion at list prices.
As investigations continue and the 737 MAX remains on the ground, questions have developed around who would be the first major airline to pull out of an order.
Flyadeal has been assessing their order for the 737 MAX since April, as seen here.
To compensate for the cancelled order, Flyadeal has signed an agreement with Airbus to take 30 A320neos ordered by it parent, Saudi Arabian Airlines, during the 2019 Paris Air Show.
Flyadeal has not formally announced the cancellation of the 737 MAX, however their press release states the A320neo order will result in the airline operating an all Airbus A320 fleet in the future.
Set to be delivered from 2021, the aircraft will allow for their pilots to transition easily thanks to their existing fleet of Airbus A320s.
No engine selection has been announced yet, however with the 737 MAX being powered by the CFM LEAP engines and their A320s powered by CFM56 engines, a LEAP order is expected.
Speaking to Reuters on the topic, a Boeing spokesperson said the following:
“We understand that Flyadeal will not finalize its commitment to the 737 MAX at this time given the airline’s schedule requirements.”
Other airlines have expressed thoughts on the aircraft, including Oman Air and flydubai, who have both said an Airbus order is viable.
A software fix can bring the aircraft back into the skies, however it takes more than a few lines of code to rebuild passenger and crew member confidence.
Would you fly on the Boeing 737 MAX?