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Southwest, A Stalwart Boeing 737 MAX Customer, Eyes Other Jets

Southwest Airlines, the largest customer of the 737 MAX and long an all-Boeing airline, insists it has “no current plans” to fly any jets other than the 737. But it’s at least eyeing the possibility. The airline’s management has proposed new language in the contract with its flight-attendants union that would grant it the flexibility “to fly more narrowbody aircraft types.” ( More...

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siriusloon 11
The closing sentence of the article, which I would remind the "fake news" screamers is from The Seattle Times not Faux News, says this: "That the 737's largest customer, after what Boeing notes is a '48-year partnership', is even contemplating the idea — one that its CEO says 'needs to be fully explored' — may be unnerving enough for Boeing."

If Boeing isn't motivated to get its act together by that, nothing will do it.
Ken Lane 3
Contrary to popular belief on this page with the claims of clickbait, etc, the Max is not the only issue Boeing has had.

And, as far as I'm concerned, the company is hurting somewhere it's not showing to the public. It's putting more restrictions on its subsidiaries, Jeppesen and Aviall.

Everyone thinks its wonderful Boeing bought Foreflight. I see that coming as a catastrophe to the GA market. Mark my words... Boeing's only concern is taking that very popular tablet application in both commercial and military applications and certifying it to connect to panels in its airliners and military models. That will be their biggest focus with general aviation taking a backseat.
airuphere 1
From your link above. “Software accounts for an increasing share of in-flight incidents, and they're not limited to Boeing aircraft. The database indicates that its rival, Airbus, has had its share of computer problems, too.” Recently many have been slagging Boeing more that deserves the article should be represented correctly. (Not a statement defending the max)
airuphere 1
I had to sorry.. from article:
“One reason glitches are multiplying is that Boeing and Airbus are both trying to shoehorn more complicated digital systems into older designs.”
airuphere 1
This is true Ken.. However if you read the article about the pilots catching errors on the NG, it goes on to say that AIRBUS has just as many computer malfunctions listed in the same time frame. Maybe there is a bigger coding issue here on cockpit subcontractors. ( not implying the MAX just the article about NASA’s pilot reporting program which faults various types for various errors)
Ken Lane 2
No argument. Time and time again I've heard issues with Airbus and also the preference for a yoke over sidesticks.

It's firmly believed the sidesticks made a huge difference on AF447 because one pilot wasn't seeing the actions of the other and it didn't help they weren't communicating.

I'll always prefer a yoke where both are physically linked and not sticks "arguing" with each other via the computer.
william baker 2
I agree with Ken here. I prefer a Yoke because you can see if the other pilot is pushing or pulling or even turning the plane rather then a side stick were it doesnt move at all. AF447 i believe wouldnt have crashed if the pilot knew what was going on and that the copilot was pulling nose up instead of down.
airuphere 1
Totally.. I agree on this front too.. feedback is a big “feature” in two pilot aircraft.. AF447 was avoidable, sidesticks + relief pilot. As for the code.. Quantas 72 has always shook me.. they try to say it’s radio interference from a ground station, I’ve always thought t was a computer malfunction as one of the pilots said..
patrick baker 5
with the backlog of orders, including several hundred placed lately, the smart idea of southwest purchasing 200 a-220 300's in an initial order wouldnot be fulfilled for several years, as would the order of , by my fondest hope, 50 787-9's, in order to spread southwest's good service around the globe just a bit. If Jetblue can see themselves going to London and other european cities, Southwest has equally good cause to do the same: sensible fares and decent service.
Totally agree, you don't wrap up production overnight.
southwest airlines did not continue to grow and be in the marketing position they are without a strategic business plan and managers who know the ins and outs of the business..they are known for having only a 737 fleet,so if a decision is made to try another type of aircraft,rest assured it will be well thought out and approved by their unions..
This is just a negotiation tactic. Soon the Max will be flying and Southwest will be buying more at a discount.
Ken Lane 4
I've heard rumors Southwest been meeting with Airbus regarding the A220.

They may be wishing they had kept the 717s from the Airtran deal. At least a maintenance program was in place on those.
They still own the 717s they just leased them to delta
Ken Lane 1
Yes, but that may be a long term lease they can't suddenly back out of.
Southwest is complicit and culpable in the MAX situation with its draconian penalty clause. It can finish the job by switching its loyalty to Airbus.
Hi. Just curious, what is it's draconian penalty clause, thanks.
pilotjag 1
Another great article...
Cansojr -2
Southwest would be doing themselves a favour if they took at the A220-300. For all the reasons the other carriers have selected them for range fuel but they have not shown any interest in this Airbus/Bombardier aircraft as of yet. Perhaps a performance spread sheet would change their perspective about this aircraft. Performance is one key but the other one is service. Without either you are dead in the water
matt jensen 4
I really don't see the problem here. There are other series of 737s they can use like the 500
linbb 2
And so you know all of the facts on how an AC is selected? Doubt it very much but is easy to make some dumb statement. One factor is having a pure one brand fleet helps greatly as a friend who worked for Alaska pointed out years back to them. Now they are faced with two brands of AC to maintain and that is a big deal.
siriusloon 2
I agree with you 100% but that desire for more of the same is what led to the MAX rather than to a clean-sheet-new aircraft.

Knowing when the time has come to start to move on and having the courage to do it is a daunting decision for even the best-run airlines.
Jayden Hakunti -3
the max debacle gives reason to a diversified fleet. southwest growth is stumped until the max8 is ungrounded.
Don Quixote -6
linbb -5
Well see its the fuel burn doesn't matter about anything else like them being smaller and having trouble fitting them into there fleet. But hey there are those who know more sitting at work doing nothing but trolling the internet.
Cansojr -2
This would be an ideal replacement for the Boeing MAX given all of its advantages. The main one they should be the low fuel burn, 20% to 25% reduction, low carbon footprint and a quiet cabin that leaves you refreshed not sucked out. Although smaller than the Boeing the low fuel burn with lower prices Will fill those seats.
houseofgold -2
There seems to be a bunch of grand-standers amongst this group. How many have Samsung phones, Takata Airbags, Apple laptops that continue to use them after allowing them to be repaired. Airbus A321 is having a pitch problem that is getting fixed too. The list is endless
btweston 11
My apple laptop never decided to smash itself again not the ground while several hundred people were riding inside of it.

Sweet analogy, though.
btweston 6
My iPhone did go a little rogue with the autocorrect there.
william baker 2
Are you sure it wasnt just the user of the iphone lol.
Graeme Smith 2
But your Apple laptop might just be on the list of Powerbooks that just got denied boarding by the FAA because it could set fire to the plane. If you had your Powerbook repaired with a new safer battery after that recall - be sure to carry documentation to prove it at the security line. :-)
Chris B -1
Betcha you look back about a month, the same story appears pushed by a link from a different website.
Chris B 0
Yup found it now....
MSU Sparty -8
Click bait and Fake News. To ramp up to support new engines and spare parts for A220 plus crew training and new scheduled lines would cost more than the delay on 737MAX. Not going to happen.
siriusloon 8
Just because you disagree with it does not mean it's fake news. There can be more than one viewpoint about something. For example, I probably don't have the same opinion of you that your mother does.
airuphere 3
I agree. An airline that has based its entire business plan on running one type of jet from one manufacturer (granted multiple variants) for their entire existence is going to run huge costs outfitting their entire operation (pilot, crew training / all hubs & ramps / sims / support materials) with a new type. Will cost way more than this delay. Just another story to pressure Boeing and FAA to hurry up.
MSU Sparty -3
So why do you get 4 likes and I got 2 dislikes for saying the same thing?
siriusloon 9
Because he posted a sensible and intelligently-expressed viewpoint and you whined about clickbait and fake news.
hornet135 3
Because most people read “fake news” and immediately downvoted.
WhiteKnight77 0
The biggest issue with the MAX and any new airplane type is computer code. While not a programmer, I have looked through and modified some simple text files for a game in the past and know that one missing symbol or string can cause unintended issues. This goes for both Boeing and Airbus. With the MAX, couple that with movement of weight, and any pilot knows that weight and its placement in an aircraft is important, to a different location, means lots of new code that may or may not work properly.

Do I think SWA is going to go with a new bird? No, otherwise they might not have leased out the 717s that they owned.


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