United Airlines and Boeing are planning a big announcement today at the airframe manufacturer’s facility in South Carolina. They’ve been expected to announce a huge order for Boeing 787s, which should be line-fit with a new Polaris business class suites with doors.
Ahead of the announcement details of the order have already been released. The Boeing 787 details are correct but they’re ordering MAX aircraft, too.
- 100 Boeing 787s, with options for an additional 100 planes, to be delivered 2024-2032
- 56 Boeing 737 Maxs, plus exercising options on 44 that were previously ordered
Last year United placed a massive order for 737 MAX aircraft and so today’s announcement was largely expected to focus on widebody 787s. When those MAXs were ordered, United announced a premium strategy that involved new planes being delivered with fast wifi and seatback entertainment and retrofitting their existing fleet however after 18 months none of those promised retrofits have yet happened.
.@united's expected aircraft delivery schedule as of Dec. 13, 2022. $UAL $BA https://t.co/kjfCk8lqqD pic.twitter.com/M1TUxGZjmG
— Ross Feinstein (@RossFeinstein) December 13, 2022
The 787s are expected to replace the airline’s 767 fleet, and earlier-to-retire 777s. United was never realistically going to order Airbus widebodies, since the carrier’s widebody fleet is exclusively Boeing to start with. Adding Airbus widebodies would have required massively undercutting Boeing because of the complexity it would add to their operation.