Following other governments and airlines around the world, both the United States and Canada are now grounding the Boeing 737 MAX 8 and MAX 9 aircraft until further notice.
The grounding of these Boeing aircraft comes after the crash of an Ethiopian flight this past Sunday which marked the second accident involving the 737 MAX 8 in less than six months.
Midday on Wednesday, President Trump made the announcement that the U.S. would also ban the aircraft while investigations continue saying “The FAA is prepared to make an announcement very shortly regarding the new information and physical evidence we’ve received from the site and from other locations and through a couple of other complaints.”
The move by the U.S. and Canada to halt the affected Boeing planes now means that MAX 8 and MAX 9 aircraft have now been grounded by every country or major airline in the world.
According to reports, the FAA said that there are approximately 350 Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft in service, which are owned by 54 different airlines globally. A complete list of Boeing 737 MAX customers can be found at https://www.boeing.com/commercial/737max/#/customers
Air Canada: There are 24 737 Max aircraft in its fleet of 400 aircraft. The airline operates approximately 75 flights per day using this aircraft, which accounts for less than six percent of its fleet. Air Canada is issuing waivers for affected flights taking place within the next 72 hours.
American Airlines: There are 24 of the MAX 8 aircraft in its fleet of nearly 1,000 mainline aircraft. The aircraft was used for approximately 85 daily flights mostly flying into and out of Miami. American is working to re-route other aircraft to minimize operational disruption across the system and to cover as much of its schedule as possible. They are working to re-accommodate impacted passengers and have issued waivers on canceled flights for travel taking place March 14 – April 3. New travel must take place by April 5, 2019. Other restrictions apply.
Southwest: There are 34 of the MAX 8 aircraft out of its fleet of more than 750 planes which means less than five percent of its flights are affected. Southwest’s Max 8 flights are spread throughout the country. Noting a high call volume and extended hold times, Southwest issued a travel advisory allowing travelers to change their flights without penalty, with certain restrictions.
United: Boeing 737 MAX aircraft accounts for roughly 40 flights a day which are concentrated primarily in Houston and Los Angeles. Through a combination of spare aircraft and rebooking customers, United does not anticipate a significant operational impact but is working with potentially impacted travelers.
Most other carriers only have a few of the MAX 8 or MAX 9’s in their fleet. While some of these carriers will be experiencing some cancellations or schedule changes, overall the temporary grounding of this aircraft is generally not posing significant impacts on flight schedules. However, as airlines effort to cover their schedules with alternate aircraft they will use regular schedule change procedures to contact passengers who might be affected by any needed changes or cancellations. As a reminder, Boeing 737-800 is not the same as a 737 MAX 8.
Please contact your Adelman travel consultant for additional information.