The Boeing 777X: Entry Into Service Expected Within 2 Years

This week, Boeing shared that it expects the 777X to enter service in two years. The US-based aircraft manufacturer shared details of the plane’s schedule ahead of the highly-anticipated Dubai Airshow.

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The Boeing 777-9 will be on display at the Dubai Airshow next month. Photo: Getty Images

Schedule shifts

The 777X was billed to be shown off at the 2019 Dubai Airshow. However, due to engine issues, the plane took off for the first time at the beginning of 2020. This postponement is part of a series of delays that the 777X program has gone through.

The plane was previously scheduled to enter service in the summer of 2020. Boeing’s management has since shared that certification may not occur until late 2023.

There had been a lot of excitement regarding the plane’s arrival, but the global health crisis has since shaken up the industry from top to bottom, taking its toll on production schedules and passenger demand. Fluctuating passenger activity and restructuring procedures have forced carriers to reconsider their fleet strategies.

Long-haul travel is the segment that is expected to take the longest to recover from the complications of the pandemic. As a result, there have been 777X deferral talks and order cuts.

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The wingspan of the 777X is 235 feet (71 m) long in flight. Photo: Getty Images

Just a couple of years

Despite the market changes and delays, Boeing expresses that the program’s progress is going well. Notably, encouraging test flights have been conducted over the last year, providing high hopes in this next chapter.

“Our flight test programme for the 777x is moving forward very well – we are working regularly with the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) to meet their expectations and requirements,” shared Randy Heisey, Managing Director, Commercial Marketing – Middle East & Africa at Boeing, as reported by Gulf News.

“We are looking forward to entry into service in just two years … where it will provide unparalleled capability and efficiency with the lowest seat loss of any airplane in its wide body category.”

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Emirates is the largest 777X customer with 115 firm orders. Photo: Getty Images

The forecast

In the widebody segment, Boeing forecasts that deliveries will be down approximately 10% this decade compared to its forecast last year. Overall, the aviation powerhouse forecasts that over 19,000 planes will be required across the industry over the next 10 years. Only 3,000 of these units are expected to be widebodies.

There had already been several notable widebody fleet overhauls before the pandemic, with airlines taking on modern solutions such as the Boeing 787 and Airbus A350 twinjets. Regardless, in a bid to operate more efficiently, airlines will keep upgrading their long-haul aircraft over the next decade. With 10% lower fuel use and 10% lower operating costs than its competition, along with a spacious wide cabin, the 777X will undoubtedly prove to be a valuable option in the new era.

What are your thoughts about the Boeing 777X? Are you looking forward to the plane’s introduction? Please share your thoughts about the aircraft and its prospects in the comment section.