American Airlines Schedules New Boeing 737 MAX Flights From September

According to Routes Online, American Airlines has put the 737 MAX into September and December 2019 flight schedules. This includes daily service between Miami and Medellin, Colombia in September and also daily service between Miami and St. Maarten starting December. The move was made despite any firm timeline as to when the 737 MAX will gain recertification.

American Airlines plans to have the 737 MAX flying to Medellin and St. Maarten in the 2nd half of 2019. Photo: American Airlines

The actual routes

Here’s what we know about the new 737 MAX routes:

AA1127/1128: Miami (MIA) to Medellin (MDE) goes by AA1127 and departs at 10:55am daily. The total flight time is 3 hours and 39 minutes. The return flight, Medellin to Miami, is flight AA1128. It departs Medellin at 2:24pm and has a total flight time of 3 hours and 37 minutes. High-speed wifi and in-seat power are available onboard.

AA1136: The other route is Miami to St. Maarten (SXM). Outbound from Miami the flight is AA1136 and departs at 10:56am. The total flight time is 3 hours and 1 minute. The return flight from St. Maarten to Miami is AA1136, departing at 3:57pm with a total flight time of 3 hours and 32 minutes. High-speed wifi and in-seat power are available onboard.

Featured Video:

The 737 MAX8 flies Miami to St. Maarten from December 2019. Photo: American Airlines

This flight to St. Maarten is one of two daily flights. The other is operated using a Boeing 757. (and no, we also don’t know why the outbound and inbound flights have identical flight numbers!)

Is September too soon?

There’s a phrase that comes from the 1989 sports movie “Field of Dreams” that says “If you build it, they will come,”. It’s meant to be a phrase symbolic of optimism and wishful thinking. So, in the case of American Airlines and the 737 MAX – if you schedule it, will it fly? Well, no one is certain of that yet.

Last month we wrote about how American Airlines was hoping to fly their new 737 MAX aircraft by August. This may still be a possibility. However, it’s much easier to add in extra capacity than to cancel flights and rebook passengers if re-entry into service doesn’t happen by then. In fact, we recently wrote about how the FAA are expecting to have the 737 MAX re-enter service possibly as soon as late June.

American Airlines has 24 737 MAX aircraft in its fleet with 76 more on order. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

This early estimate came following a Federal Aviation Administration briefing with the UN’s International Civil Aviation Organization. However, we also know that no one on the regulatory side wants to rush into a decision they may regret later.

As we reported last week, Daniel Elwell, acting administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, told reporters that there is much testing to be done, saying to reporters:

“If it takes a year to find everything we need to give us the confidence to lift the order [to ground the planes], then so be it… We will not lift the prohibition until it’s safe to do so.”

Conclusion

Until recertification happens, airlines will continue spending money to store and maintain their 737 MAX planes. If you somehow end up taking a winter vacation trip from Miami to St. Maarten on American Airlines, would you choose to fly on the 737 MAX 8, or would you opt to take the much older 757?

9 comments
  1. Wishful thinking by American Airlines.

    The safest thing is to just avoid the 737 Max.

    I usually fly Delta. They don’t have any 737 Max aircraft. Google “Southwest Airlines is going to allow people who don’t want to fly on the Boeing 737 Max to switch planes for free”. United as well so far. Hopefully all other airlines allow passengers to avoid the 737 Max for free as well.

    If passengers refuse to board the 737 Max it will go away. Chopped up for scrap. Unable to kill any more customers.

    Both Boeing and the FAA said the plane was safe originally and also safe after almost every other country had grounded it after two crashes. Why would anyone believe anything they have to say about safety now?

    They used to be the safest in the world. Now it’s all about profits so we are on our own for safety.

    The original plan at Boeing was to create a proper, clean sheet new design to replace the 737. It’s not designed for modern engines at all which is where the problem started. Boeing planned to finally kill this dinosaur from the 60s. Instead upper management and sales killed this idea as well as 346 passengers.

  2. Wishful thinking by American Airlines.

    The safest thing is to just avoid the 737 Max and make sure to take other aircraft.

    I usually fly Delta. They don’t have any 737 Max aircraft. Google “Southwest Airlines is going to allow people who don’t want to fly on the Boeing 737 Max to switch planes for free”. United as well so far. Hopefully all other airlines allow passengers to avoid the 737 Max for free as well.

    If passengers refuse to board the 737 Max it will go away. Chopped up for scrap. Unable to kill any more customers.

    Both Boeing and the FAA said the plane was safe originally and also safe after almost every other country had grounded it after two crashes. Why would anyone believe anything they have to say about safety now?

    They used to be the safest in the world. Now it’s all about profits so we are on our own for safety.

    The original plan at Boeing was to create a proper, clean sheet new design to replace the 737. It’s not designed for modern engines at all which is where the problem started. Boeing planned to finally kill this dinosaur from the 60s. Instead upper management and sales killed this idea as well as 346 passengers.

  3. Virtually ALL American Airlines outbound and return flights are the same flight number, as though the round trip is “one” flight.

    1. Hi David – thanks for the input! Clearly I don’t fly American Airlines enough.

      However, a quick search of some AA flights that I’ve done – YVR-DFW and DFW-LHR have different flight numbers for the return journey. And as I continue searching I see a few more outbound/return flights with different numbers. LHR/LAX and LAX/MIA as more examples. So I wouldn’t say “virtually ALL”.

  4. I have no concerns flying on a 737 MAX on a US Based carrier, especially AA. Americans maintenance team and pilots are top notch and well trained.

    The incidents that have occurred on the MAX were all with junior pilots and non US carriers. The pilots in MAX incidents have minimal hours (far less than what is required to fly commercial in the US) and one can only suspect their training is not as stringent.

    1. Wrong. The only reason there were no US crashes is 80% of the 737 Max aircraft are not in the US.
      Russian Roulette works like that. It would have been a matter of time.
      Google “Pilots union to Boeing: ‘Inexcusable’ to blame pilots for 737 Max crashes”. Who are you going to believe, American Airlines pilots or Boeing?
      “Tajer, who has flown the 737 MAX, argues the Ethiopian Airlines pilots did what they were instructed to do but that Boeing’s MCAS forced the plane into such an aggressive downward angle that the pilots could not recover.
      “They had wired that thing so that it was irrecoverable. It just blew us away,” Tajer said.”

  5. If the European Aviation and other world agencies do not give the Boeing 737 Max series aircrafts a green light then it will only fly in the US.
    Strange that American Airlines will start or resume flights next September to Medellin/ Colombia and St Maartens(Island belonging to the Netherlands) ?
    How can AA assume that Colombia and the Netherlands will approve of the FAA ‘certification only like it used to?

  6. I think the MAX will fly again, but not before a long time.
    Progress seems very slow. Already mid-April Boeing said that the software update was ready. Then they said again the same mid May. And FAA say now end May they have still not received this update.
    Boeing announces over 200 testflights with new Mcas. But if you look at flightaware or Radar24 there have only be FOUR : one on April,3 , one on April 16, one on April 17 and another very short one on May,15 (with plane N7201S) So those over 200 “testflights” are most surely only simulator flights.
    I have the impression something is not right there and they are still hiding something.

  7. With some regulators outside the US indicating they aren’t following the FAA’s decision to lift the ban this decision may be too soon. Also as I learn more in the media the Boeing 737 Max is sounding as a repeat of the Kegworth 737-4Y0 disaster in 1989 in terms of pilot training. You have to wonder what each country and in fact each airline will mandate for pilot training.

    I do see the good will of some airlines waiving transfer fees for the flying public wanting not to be aboard a 737 Max. Certainly you don’t want people experiencing the symptoms of anxiety in the air. At the end of the day it is the passengers and what the market will bare in determining if an airplane is viable.

    in theory an airplane improves in safety with each crash. But if this was as rushed into service as has been uncovered I wonder if other issues need uncovering to actually make it safe. I am also wondering what the sink rate is for a dual engine flame out with the air frame not being balanced due to the engines.

    I can’t imagine what the grief stricken families are going through. I do hope the industry and regulars learn the lessons of these 2 crashes. Life is just too short to have it snuffed out profits over safety.

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