American Airlines has just updated their schedule, and with that we are seeing the airline cancel 737 MAX flights for roughly two additional months.
No one knows when the 737 MAX will return to the skies
Frankly with the number of new problems emerging with the 737 MAX, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the plane not return to service in 2020. Only time will tell.
There’s no denying that the 737 MAX is facing a huge uphill battle, both in terms of Boeing getting the plane certified once again, and also in terms of customers being okay with flying the plane, given just how many horrible details have emerged regarding the process that got this plane certified in the first place.
American cancels 737 MAX flights through June 3, 2020
American has updated their schedule as it pertains to the 737 MAX. As of today American Airlines has removed the 737 MAX from their schedule for flights through June 3, 2020.
American’s 737 MAX cabin
As the airline explains in a press release, “once the aircraft is certified, American will run flights for American team members and invited guests only prior to June 4.”
Prior to this, American had canceled 737 MAX flights through April 6, so the timeline has slipped by an additional two months or so.
What flights will be canceled?
American is extending cancelations with the plane in order to more reliably plan their schedule over the coming months, with about 140 flights per day being canceled.
While they had already canceled flights through April, we can expect additional flights through June to be canceled with a schedule change that will be loaded on January 19. An additional schedule change is expected to be loaded in February.
It’s worth understanding, however, that not all flights that were supposed to be operated by the 737 MAX will be canceled, and conversely, some flights not operated by the 737 MAX may be canceled.
That’s because American is reworking their schedule somewhat, so we may see situations where they put a 737-800 (or another aircraft) on a flight that was previously scheduled to be operated by a 737 MAX.
That also means that there will be flights that were supposed to be operated by other planes that will be canceled so the plane can be used on a high priority 737 MAX route.
Per the latest guidance, the 737 MAX won’t be returning to service until at least June 4, 2020. In reality there’s not actually anything significant about that date, though.
Rather the airline just needs to be able to plan their schedule for the next several months, so they can load schedule changes with a bit of advance notice.
In the past I thought the 737 MAX may be flying within a few months, though at this point I’m not nearly as optimistic as I used to be.