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737 Max Updates and Cancellations


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12 hours ago, moeman said:

I hope AC is first...

Some US carriers are posting record profits without the Max because they’ve cancelled under performing flights, consolidated others and re-distributed aircraft. I don’t think AC has that same luxury due their route structure and our population. They have moved aircraft around to make up for the lost summer seats but that demand will drop off in about 30 days. The big hurdle in my opinion is how to bring the Max back if ever or just return them to Boeing and find some NG’s or other aircraft with a good safety record. 

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1 hour ago, blues deville said:

No doubt about that. WJ was supposed to have 16 in the fleet by now and AC at least 30.

I'm thinking there's another shoe to drop soon, I have no inside information but I think one or both carriers will announce some sort of "adjustment" in their Max orders...

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The next shoe to drop is when customers become able to NTU aircraft that have already been built but not delivered due to delay, that will be a cascading issue until the backlog has been delivered and could be another major black swan event if it coincides with an economic downturn.

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Icelandair reports Max grounding's second-quarter impact

  • SOURCE: Flight Dashboard
  • BY: Niall O'Keeffe
  • London

Icelandair remained loss-making in the second quarter, as the grounding of the Boeing 737 Max fleet took a $50 million toll on the carrier's operating result.

EBIT was negative to the tune of $24 million in the quarter, widening a $20 million reverse in the same period last year. The net loss rose from $26 million to $34 million.

Passenger numbers were up 16%, on capacity lifted 8%, and the load factor improved by 4.7 percentage points to 85%.

The effective fuel price was 5% higher than in the same period last year, notes the carrier. It says aviation costs excluding fuel were cut by 5% and other expenses by 17%.

It gives a figure of 72% for on-time arrivals in the first half, versus 60% in the same period of last year, and says it expects to cut last year's disruption costs, which totalled $45 million, by "at least 40%" this year. The first-half figure was reduced by $7 million.

Across the full year, Icelandair expects the Max suspension to have a $140 million impact on operating profit.

The airline lists a range of ways in which the grounding has affected revenues and costs.

Cited in the revenue category are the reaccommodation and "re-protection" of passengers, lost network connections, lost ancillary revenues and yields, lower net promoter scores (NPS), and "imbalance in the route network".

The impacts on expenses meanwhile span ACMI costs, fuel savings not realised, higher finance costs, idle crew, costs associated with aircraft replacement and grounded resources, the "short-term reactive mode" into which the airline has been forced, rerouting costs, extra claims, and additional crew training.

Cirium's Fleets Analyzer shows that Icelandair has six Max jets in storage – five Max 8s and one Max 9 – and three on order: two -8s and a -9.

The airline says it is wet-leasing three 767s, a 757 and an A319. These, it adds, are "less efficient" than the Max. Discussions with Boeing on compensation continue.

With the $140 million Max effect factored in, the airline is projecting that full-year EBIT will be negative to the tune of $70-90 million

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The third quarter is the best time to be short of aircraft.

It forces the Revenue Management people to shave the number of cheap seats to be offered and the margins increase for the airline.  There is also a better cash flow because the airline is not sending out big amounts to pay for all that new tin.

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‎Yesterday, ‎August ‎8, ‎2019, ‏‎6:52:27 PM

Boeing 737 MAX – Air Canada is one of the most impacted airlines

‎Yesterday, ‎August ‎8, ‎2019, ‏‎6:48:25 PM | Canadian Aviation News

B737 Max – Maximum Aviation Xpense


News provided by OAG – link to full story

by John Grant 6 August 2019

The grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX continues and the commercial damage for airline operators appears to be increasing as the loss of capacity is now at its highest during the peak summer season for many operators. But just how large is the damage and what is the current status?


Using our latest analytics tools, we tracked back to mid-February and compared the schedules filed then against the latest schedules filed for all B737Max operators and the numbers are staggering.

41 Million and counting….

In the table below we have outlined the original planned capacity for selected operators and compared that to the current planned B737 Max operation; in essence a “before and after” assessment of the grounding.

Table 1 – Selected Scheduled Airline B737 Max Grounding Impact

selected-scheduled-airline-b737-max-grounding-impactSource: OAG Schedules Analyser

For every carrier there appears to be a significant reduction in capacity offered, much of which would have been assumed in the original planning of the carriers for this financial year. Last minute schedule adjustments are we know challenging for any carrier, but the scale of the B737 Max grounding has been very disruptive for many.

China Southern are the largest carrier impacted with a loss of some 3.8 million seats whilst American Airlines have lost close to 2 million seats. Indeed, across five major North American airlines some 11 million seats have been dropped from sales compared to the schedules filed in mid-February.

Many carriers have of course made operational adjustments, continued to operate aircraft with perhaps lower levels of capacity and incurred significant additional cost as part of that recovery programme. Accountants will of course be keeping a very close eye on every expense incurred as a result of the grounding as they prepare a series of claims for the inconvenience caused.

November Scheduling Dilemma

The introduction of the winter schedules for many airlines in the last week of October normally results in a slight seasonal reduction in capacity, at least until early in the new year. Just as importantly that date is a key planning milestone for many carriers and at the moment a number of airlines continue to show B737 Max services from the end of October as they are yet to finalise and adjust their schedules.

For many airlines contingency plans will already have been put in place and a realistic return to service of the aircraft by that date as speculation continues on when the aircraft will be able to re-enter commercial operations. Of course, for the airlines in any subsequent compensation claim publishing scheduled services from November onwards certainly doesn’t harm their case.

Chart 1- Planned B737 Max Capacity By Week Selected Scheduled Airlines

planned-b373-max-capacity-by-week-selected-scheduled-airlinesSource: OAG Schedules Analyser

Calculating the cost

The cost of the B737 Max grounding will of course vary from airline to airline. Some carriers may have had a higher dependency on Max flying, some may have had quicker and cheaper access to alternate aircraft, and some may perhaps have been able to mitigate some of their cost. Alongside the cost there will also be a loss of revenue for many airlines, some of whom may have sold more cheaper advanced purchase capacity based on B737 Max capacity and then found themselves unable to revenue manage their flights as originally intended.

Using a notional US$100 for the combined impact of additional costs; both direct and indirect and the loss of revenue then for the airlines affected the impact of the lost capacity could be running towards US$ 4 Billion and that assumes a November reintroduction which looks increasingly unlikely. When the expected profit for the airline industry in 2019 is some US$ 28 billion losing such a some will inevitably hit that expectation; especially when some of the world’s most profitable carriers are impacted.

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Airlines hurt by the 737 Max grounding are scrambling to find replacement jets

  • Nolinor Aviation is leasing jets to airlines that are scrambling to cover routes and schedules hit hard by the grounding of Boeing’s 737 Max.
  • The airline  has 10 Boeing 737-200 planes and has fielded requests about their availability through Christmas.
  • The 737 Max has been grounded since mid-March after two crashes killed a total of 346 people. It is unclear when the planes will be flying again. 
Here’s how airlines are compensating the loss of Boeing 737 Max planes

Nolinor Aviation in Mirabel, Quebec is a company in demand. Actually, its planes, pilots and maintenance teams are the hot commodity.

With 10 Boeing 737-200 planes, Nolinor is leasing jets to airlines that are scrambling to cover routes and schedules hit hard by the grounding of Boeing’s 737 Max.


“We have a lot of requests from many airlines that don’t have enough capacity to do their charter flights on the weekends or their regular schedules,” said Marco Prud’Homme, vice president of Nolinor Aviation.

In June, Nolinor and its pilots started flying daily for Sunwing, a low-cost carrier out of Toronto with four grounded Boeing 737 Max planes. For Sunwing, Nolinor’s jets help cover flights that would otherwise be canceled.

“It’s the first time that we ever saw such demand around Canada or around our part of the country, that’s for sure,” said Prud’Homme.

The 737 Max has been grounded since mid-March after two crashes killed a total of 346 people. It is unclear when the planes will be flying again.

For airlines that planned to fly the Max, it has become a scramble to find replacement jets. Some carriers like United are filling that void by purchasing used 737s, which will start flying later this year. Meanwhile, Air Canada has hired Qatar Air to fly some of its routes between Canada and Europe.


CNBC: Nolinor Aviation 1

A charter company based in Mirabel, Quebec (outside Montreal) helping airlines manage through the 737 Max crisis.
Meghan Reeder | CNBC

“I would say that most passengers are oblivious. They are getting on a fuselage, they don’t even see the color scheme as they are walking down a jetway,” said Phil Seymour, CEO of the International Bureau of Aviation, a consulting firm based in London. “Maybe once they get into the seat, then they think, ‘Oh last time I flew I was in this kind of a seat now I am in a different seat.’ But really, I suppose they are just happy to go from A to B.”

The bottom line for airlines: There are schedules to cover even if it means paying more for short-term leases because there are only so many spare commercial airplanes around the world.

“They’re probably in the order of 5 or 10% over and above where they were last year,” said Seymour.

The global supply of commercial airplanes was helped early this year with the bankruptcies of Jet Airways out of India and Wow Air out of Iceland. With more than 500 Boeing 737 Max planes parked all around the world, there remains a shortage of commercial jets.

This explains why a charter aviation firm like Nolinor has been steadily fielding calls about their availability for months.

“We started having requests about our availability for summer. Then it changed to ‘Will you still be available during fall?’ And now we’re talking about Christmas time?” Prud’Homme said.

As he talks about Nolinor’s busy summer in a hanger next to the Montreal-Mirabel International Airport, technicians work on one of the company’s 737-200 planes. It’s getting a full maintenance checkup. When it’s done in a few weeks, Prud’Homme knows that plane will not sit idle for long.

C-FAWV Convair 340 154 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2001-02-21
C-FCJV Boeing 737-2M2 22776 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2019-07-15
C-FHCW Learjet 45 213 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2018-01-05
C-FHNM Convair 440 454 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2005-12-14
C-FTAP Convair 440 334 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 1998-02-13
C-FVNC Learjet 31A 187 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2018-10-24
C-GFCN Boeing 737-2M2C 21173 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2019-07-08
C-GNLA Boeing 737-2L9 22072 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2016-09-16
C-GNLE Boeing 737-248C 21011 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2017-02-28
C-GNLK Boeing 737-2K2C 20836 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2014-04-29
C-GNLN Boeing 737-2B6C 23050 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2008-09-25
C-GNLQ Boeing 737-33A 25401 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2016-05-27
C-GNLW Boeing 737-2R4C 23130 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2016-03-18
C-GNRD Boeing 737-229C 21738 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2011-09-16
C-GQHB Convair 440 376 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 1998-02-13
C-GRLQ Convair 440 347 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 1998-02-13
C-GSZN Hughes 369D 1270243D Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2015-08-18
C-GTUK Boeing 737-2B6C 23049 Les Investissements Nolinor Inc. 2007-10-11
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Older Boeing jets are now in hot demand because of the 737 Max grounding

Published Sat, Aug 10 2019 9:30 AM EDT
Key Points
  • Leasing firms say they’re seeing increased demand for older 737 planes as Maxes stay grounded.
  • Short-term lease rates for some older Boeing jets increased about 40% since the grounding, according to IBA Aero.
  • Regulators grounded the 737 Max jets worldwide in mid-March after two fatal crashes.
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Here’s how airlines are compensating the loss of Boeing 737 Max planes

As the worldwide grounding of the Boeing 737 Max enters its sixth month, airlines are turning to older jets to help meet growing demand, prompting a surge in rental rates.

“Used 800s are like a gold dust at the moment,” said Phil Seymour, CEO of London-based aerospace consulting firm IBA, referring to Boeing 737-800s, an older model of the plane. He estimates lease rates for 24 months or less, for some older 737 planes have gone up 40% to about $300,000 since regulators grounded the planes in March after two fatal crashes within five months of one another. Together the two disasters claimed 346 lives — everyone on board the two planes — and regulators have not said when they will allow the planes to fly again.


Crash investigators have implicated a piece of flight-control software that repeatedly pushed the nose of the planes down in both the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines crashes. Boeing is testing a software fix for the planes and expects regulators to allow the jets to return to service early in the fourth quarter, but warned that the date could be pushed back further.

The grounding has left airlines without the fuel-efficient 737 Max planes they were counting on during the busy mid-year vacation season, sending some carriers to pay up for the older models that are less fuel efficient.

The International Air Transport Association, a trade group, this week said air travel demand rose about 5% in the first half of 2019 from a year ago.

Michael Inglese, CEO of leasing firm Aircastle, said some customers whose leases on older 737 jets are expiring are extending their agreements and that the increased demand has been a “modest benefit” to the company. The firm doesn’t have any 737 Max planes or any on order. Inglese said when the planes were first grounded in March customers expected the jets to return to service quickly, but now carriers are debating how to address the prolonged grounding.

“Now it feels there’s a little more decision paralysis,” he said. “Everybody is scratching their head at the moment.”


The Boeing 737 has been a staple of airline fleets for more than 50 years, a single-aisle jet that can fly short- and medium-haul flights and fit more than 150 passengers.

Airlines including Southwest and Brazil’s Gol, that exclusively fly 737s are holding on to older planes longer. Southwest warned investors last month that the grounding would force it to reduce capacity this year instead of the 5% growth it had planned, while Gol said the older, less fuel efficient 737s that it’s keeping in its fleet are forcing it to include a stop in the Dominican Republic on its new routes to Florida from Brazil, which CFO Rich Lark said makes it more unattractive to customers who would be flying nonstop on the 737 Max.

Some leasing firms say they don’t have any 737-800s or other older models to lease, but that hasn’t stopped some airlines from trying.

“Fly has already leased all of its B737s this year so we don’t have any available,” Colm Barrington, CEO of Ireland-based Fly Leasing, said in an email. “Based on airline inquires, we are seeing strong demand for B737-800s in particular, which is likely to be reflected in higher re-lease rates for the type this year.”

On a July 30 earnings call AerCap CEO Aengus Kelly said that almost all of the lessor’s planes are placed with airlines when he was asked about lease rates.

“So it’s not that we have a bunch of airplanes on the deck, that we can just put up in the air because of the shortage of Maxes,” he said. “So we don’t immediately generate a gain from that per se.”

Boeing paused deliveries of the 737 Max after the grounding and cut production by a fifth to 42 a month. It took a $4.9 billion charge in the second quarter, an estimate of compensation airlines and other Max customers will receive.

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Air Lease exchanges 15 737 orders for 787s amid Max grounding

  • 12 August, 2019
  • SOURCE: FlightGlobal.com

Air Lease has taken steps to mitigate its exposure to the ongoing Boeing 737 Max crisis with an opportune deal to switch 15 of its orders to the 787.

Speaking during its second-quarter earnings call on 8 August, Air Lease chief executive John Plueger said that the lessor is working on the basis that it will receive no further 737 Max aircraft during 2019, although he emphasised that this was an independent view and did not reflect Boeing’s position.

“Frankly, I hope our assumption is wrong, as we do look forward to delivery recommencement of the Max as soon as possible,” says Plueger, adding that “much of our new lease placement activity has been somewhat muted pending return to service of the Max”.

As of 30 June 2019, Air Lease had outstanding orders for 150 737 Max aircraft, but it has signed a memorandum of understanding with Boeing to switch 15 of these to a deal for five 787-9s.

Plueger says ALC was “short in the second quarter of this year of 787-9s [on order]” with greater demand for 2020-2022 deliveries than available in its backlog. So Air Lease considered that “the wisest thing to do was to convert 15 of our Max 8s and 9s into five additional 787-9s”, he says.

The suspension of Max deliveries coincides with Airbus’s continuing production delays impacting A321neo shipments, which has resulted in Air Lease having to adjust its contracted delivery schedule, according to the lessor's chief financial officer Greg Willis.

Plueger says the combination of the Max grounding and the A321neo delays has resulted in a rise near-term demand for single-aisles, which has helped drive up certain lease rates. Air Lease has helped provide interim capacity for some Max customers either through dry lease or short-term wet leases from other operators.

“Truthfully, we really haven't had experience of this type of delay,” he says.

Cirium’s Fleets Analyzer shows that there are currently 15 Air Lease-managed 737 Max 8s in storage with six operators from which it continues to receive monthly rentals: Cayman Airways, Globus, LOT Polish Airlines, Oman Air, Smartwings and Sunwing Airlines.

“To the extent that, any of those customers will demand concessions, please understand that we will look to Boeing to cover every dollar of any deficiency that might arise,” says Plueger.


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How Airlines Are Defending Dormant 737 MAX Jets From The Ravages Of Corrosion, Insects And Time

News provided by Forbes.com – link to full story and updates

Aug 12, 2019

Jeremy Bogaisky Forbes Staff Aerospace & Defense Deputy editor for Industry; eyes on the skies

Southwest Parks Grounded Boeing 737 MAX Planes At Remote California Airport Southwest Airlines Boeing 737 MAX aircraft at Southern California Logistics Airport.GETTY IMAGES

Boeing 737 MAX planes have been stuck on the ground now for five months. With the likelihood rising that they won’t return to service before the winter, some airlines may soon have to deal with the danger that the planes could literally become stuck to the ground. 

Tires of planes that are parked for long periods of time can freeze to the tarmac during subzero weather, warns a Boeing maintenance manual for the previous generation of 737 aircraft. It advises maintenance workers to place sand or a coarse fiber mat under the tires and covers over the wheels and brake assemblies to protect them from the corrosive effects of rain and snow.

With the end of summer drawing closer, Air Canada is considering moving its 24 737 MAX planes south to the gentler climes of a desert storage yard, a spokesperson told Forbes. WestJet says it’s content to keep its 13 planes in Canada, spooling up the engines every week and taking them for a spin on the apron around their hangars.

Airlines have had 387 MAX planes sitting quietly at airports and storage facilities around the world since March, when the second of two horrific crashes led aviation authorities worldwide to ground Boeing’s best-selling plane. Boeing is storing roughly another 200 that it has assembled but can’t deliver. 

Planes are built to move. Making sure these aren’t damaged from their prolonged grounding has become the mission of a small army of maintenance staff. The longer the planes’ wings are clipped, the more needs to be done. Among the main tools, as prescribed by the 737 manual: copious amounts of yellow 3M vinyl tape No. 471 to seal off gaps and sensors, and an array of lubricants.

Southwest Airlines, the largest operator of the 737 MAX, is storing its fleet of 34 planes in the dry heat of the high Mojave desert at an airfield in Victorville, California. Once a week, maintenance workers power up the Leap-1B engines, which their maker, CFM International, a partnership between General Electric and Safran, recommend should be idled for 15 to 20 minutes to vaporize any moisture that may have collected in the oil and fuel systems and to cover engine parts with a new coat of oil to prevent corrosion. Southwest technicians also boot up the flight computers and auxiliary power units weekly.

The doors of planes stored in the desert are generally opened during summer days so the cabins aren’t damaged by the heat, says David Querio, president of Ascent Aviation Services, which operates at Pinal Airpark in Arizona, one of the largest aircraft storage yards in the world. 

Birds sometimes nest on a plane, and, rarely, an animal will take advantage of an open door to take up residence inside. “They’re removed the same day if they’re stupid enough to do that,” says Querio. 

As the timeline for the 737 MAX’s return has receded further over the past few weeks, some airlines could decide to put their planes into a state of deeper storage, with the engines preserved and batteries and other sensitive parts removed, says Tim Zemanovic, president of the Minnesota aircraft disassembly firm Fillmore Aviation. Because it requires fewer regular maintenance tasks, this type of storage generally runs half the cost of active storage, at roughly $1,000 a month per plane, he says, but it means it would take more time to ready the planes to fly again when aviation regulators sign off on Boeing’s fixes for the 737 MAX.

In long-term storage, the engines, the single most valuable part on an airliner, are “pickled”: The oil is drained and replaced with an oil mixed with a corrosion prevention solution, and desiccant bags—larger versions of the moisture-removing silica packets put in consumer goods—are placed in the inlets, with gauges that monitor humidity levels. Then the ends are covered to keep out the elements, animals and insects, says Zemanovic, who used to run a storage and maintenance facility at Pinal Airpark.

When planes are dormant for more than two months, Boeing’s 737 maintenance manual calls for gaps in the fuselage to be sealed with vinyl tape and screens placed over drain holes. A protective coating is sprayed onto unpainted metal surfaces. The cabins go dark, with the window shades closed and cockpit windshields covered with aluminum foil tape or other reflective material. Cotton covers are put over the seats and runners protect the carpets. 

Planes at a storage yard typically get visited at least once a day to make sure the exterior coverings are intact, says Querio. 

The 737 manual lays out a schedule of maintenance procedures to be done at regular intervals that’s heavy on lubrication of myriad parts.

Every week the plane should be scanned for corrosion; every two weeks, electrical systems powered up for two hours. Every 30 days the plane should be moved a third of a wheel’s turn, to prevent the tires from getting flat spots; carpets and seats checked for mildew; and water drained from the sumps of fuel tanks to prevent growth of bacteria or fungi, which can have the consistency of mayonnaise and plug fuel filters. 

Every 90 days, the flaps, rudder and other control services need to be exercised. 

If the grounding extends to a year, the landing gear may need to be flexed, says Zemanovic, with the plane propped up on giant jacks placed under the wings and the nose. Boeing and Airbus recommend that some models should be restored to operating condition after a year before being shut down again, says Querio.

Boeing expects aviation regulators to sign off on its fixes for the 737 MAX and a revised training regime early in the fourth quarter, but given previous delays and new technical issues that have arisen over the past few months, some industry watchers think the plane’s return to service could slip further. Southwest Airlines has taken the 737 MAX off its flight schedule till January 5; Air Canada has scrubbed the plane through January 8.

A Southwest spokesman said that once the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration declares the model airworthy, the airline expects it will take 120 hours of work on each plane to get them ready to fly again, and 30 to 60 days for the airline’s whole fleet.

One giant task: cleaning the planes. Dust can collect inside planes stored in the desert if the doors are vented, requiring a thorough vacuuming, says Zemanovic, and if the storage facility doesn’t have a concrete wash pad with drains to properly dispose of large amounts of soapy water, workers may have no choice but to wipe down the plane by hand, a laborious process that he says could require a “couple hundred” man hours. Two necessities for the job: 27-foot high work platforms and a mammoth supply of cleaning wipes. 

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Simulators are not cheap but ....

  • 14 AUGUST, 2019

Southwest Airlines ordered another three Boeing 737 Max simulators from flight training company CAE in the second quarter of 2019, doubling its Max simulator orders ahead of the expected lifting of the Max's global grounding.

Simulator company CAE disclosed Southwest's three-unit order on 14 August.

The airline has already received, and is now setting up, one 737 Max full-flight simulator, the carrier's vice-president of flight operations Alan Kasher told FlightGlobal last week.

Southwest expects that unit will be operational in October. It anticipates having another two Max simulators online early in the first quarter of 2020, followed by the final three in 2021, Kasher said.

Other airlines are also acquiring Max simulators following two crashes that prompted the grounding.

American Airlines has "one simulator that is in the process of being installed", and United Airlines anticipates receiving its first simulator in the first quarter of 2020, those carriers say.

Neither American nor United have said how many additional Max simulators they have on order.

Regulators grounded the 737 Max in March and have said they will lift the grounding after approving Boeing's updates to the aircraft's flight control system, and new training requirements.

Whether those requirements will include a simulator mandate remain unknown, and regulatory requirements could vary by region.

In April, Southwest chief executive Gary Kelly suggested the US Federal Aviation Administration will not require simulator time, though Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg has said some airlines may implement such training.

"We are not hearing that will be a requirement," Kelly said on 25 April in response to a question about possible simulator training requirements.

Kelly drew that conclusion from discussions with the FAA, Boeing and Southwest's pilots' union, he said.

Insiders have also suggested that Boeing's 737 Max software overhaul, when complete, will eliminate areas of concern that might have otherwise warranted Max-specific simulator time.

"There will likely be some selective use of simulator training," Boeing's Muilenburg said in July. "Some airlines will use simulator training as part of their recurring training. Some may want training up front before they fully return the fleet to service."

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(Reuters) - Canadian leisure airline Sunwing said on Thursday it removed the Boeing 737 MAX jet from its network’s winter schedule through May 2020, the longest of any carrier yet, as the plane’s grounding drags on longer than the industry previously expected.

Sunwing said in a statement that its winter schedule, which goes into effect on Nov. 5 and runs until mid-May, is being planned without the MAX to give passengers “much-needed reassurance” while planning their winter vacations.

The MAX was grounded worldwide in March after an Ethiopian Airlines plane plunged to the ground soon after take-off, five months after a similar Lion Air fatal crash off the coast of Indonesia.


While Boeing has targeted October, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has not set a timeline for the ungrounding, and it is not yet clear when the 737 MAX will fly again.

North American airlines have canceled thousands of flights and scrambled to secure additional capacity because of the grounding, with Southwest Airlines Co (LUV.N) and Air Canada (AC.TO) removing the MAX from their schedules until early January 2020. Other carriers, like American Airlines (AAL.O) and Canada’s WestJet Airlines (WJA.TO) have removed the MAX from their schedules until November.

“The worldwide grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft created operational difficulties for us during the summer months when we did not have additional capacity within our fleet to replace this aircraft type,” Andrew Dawson, president of tour operations for Sunwing, said in a statement.


“In order to maintain our customers’ vacation plans, it was necessary to contract flying with third-party carriers and make schedule changes or cancellations to over 3,000 flights.”

Sunwing said it would “evaluate opportunities to add capacity or reintegrate” the MAXes back into the fleet, if the planes are ungrounded during the winter.

Sunwing said its winter flights would be operated on an earlier generation of the popular 737 plane.

Reporting by Allison Lampert in Montreal; Edit

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Canada’s two biggest airlines taking different tacks with grounded 737 Max aircraft

‎Today, ‎August ‎16, ‎2019, ‏‎2 hours ago | Canadian Aviation News

News provided by The Globe and Mail – link to full story and updates


FM4ONEBOHRAMLH7YEUXDMBFEPY.jpg Air Canada is looking at sending its two-dozen Max 8s to the desert, where the hot, dry conditions keep corrosion by rain, snow, sleet and ice at bay.

Canada’s two biggest airlines are taking different tacks to stow their Boeing 737 Max 8s as the aircraft’s drawn-out grounding continues to cause turbulence in the flight industry.

Air Canada is looking at sending its two-dozen Max 8s to the desert, where the hot, dry conditions keep corrosion by rain, snow, sleet and ice at bay.

“Given the uncertainty about the timing of regulatory approvals for the return to service of the Boeing 737 Max, we continue to update our plans, including caring for the 737 Max aircraft in our fleet. One option being considered is relocating aircraft to the desert,” said Air Canada spokeswoman Angela Mah, citing the optimal climate.

Most North American desert storage locations sit in the southern United States, such as California’s Mojave Desert, where Southwest Airlines Co. has parked its 34 Maxes for the time being.

WestJet Airlines Ltd. has no plans to move its 13 Max 8s south of the border. The planes – which it has scrubbed from its schedule until November, shrinking total seat capacity by about 10 per cent – are sitting in its Canadian hangars, where they receive regular maintenance checks and have their engines run once a week, a spokesperson said.

The contingency arrangements add another wrinkle to the plans of airlines blown off course by the Max 8 grounding, prompted after two crashes in October and March that killed 346 people, including 18 Canadians.

Air Canada CEO Calin Rovinescu said last month it will feel the grounding “acutely” this summer, as its passenger capacity declines and costs for less fuel-efficient replacement planes mount. The 24 Max 8s comprise about 20 per cent of Air Canada’s narrow-body fleet and would typically carry about 11,000 passengers a day.

WestJet chief executive Ed Sims told The Canadian Press in a recent interview the loss of the short-to-medium-range jetliner has had a “substantial negative impact” on the airline, forcing it to cut certain routes and ramp up fuel spending.

Sunwing Airlines Inc., which has four Max 8s, said the grounding has affected some 3,000 flights over the summer and forced the airline to contract third-party carriers. Max 8s will be absent from its rotation until at least mid-May 2020, a spokesperson said Friday.

Robert Kokonis, president of Toronto-based consulting firm AirTrav Inc., highlighted the cost and inconvenience of moving aircraft into far-flung storage facilities.

“You’re going to have to fly it down there – a ferry flight 1/8 no passengers 3/8 one way. You’re going to have to pay the air park to prep and store the aircraft. And then when it’s ready to be brought back into service, you’ve got to send a team down and get it ready to fly again, with a ferry flight back up to home base,” he said.

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