flydubai Could Purchase Airbus In Wake Of Boeing 737 MAX Crisis

flydubai could look to purchase Airbus aircraft as their frustration with Boeing rises. The airline claims that Boeing needs to improve its customer communication following the grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX.

flydubai airbus order
flydubai is the second largest Boeing 737 MAX customer. Photo: flydubai

flydubai is a strong Boeing supporter, exclusively flying the Boeing 737 family of aircraft. As such, it would pay for Boeing to keep the airline in their good books, as they would likely require more aircraft somewhere down the road. It seems like this isn’t the case, however, as reports suggest flydubai is considering changing allegiances to the Airbus A320 family.

About flydubai

flydubai is a low-cost airline owned by The Government of Dubai. While the Dubai government also owns Emirates Airlines, the two entities are not connected, with flydubai remaining outside of the Emirates Group. The airline was founded in March 2008, commencing operations in June 2009. flydubai currently has a fleet of 59 aircraft according to Airfleets.net, however, 13 of these are grounded Boeing 737 MAXs.

flydubai airbus order
The airline states that it currently doesn’t know when it can fly its MAX aircraft again. Photo: flydubai

While the airline has only received 13 MAXs, it has a much greater outstanding order for the aircraft. In fact, flydubai placed an order for 175 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft which, according to Boeing, was worth $27 billion at the time. This makes the airline the second largest MAX customer.

Unhappy customers

According to Reuters, flydubai is less than pleased with how Boeing is handling the Boeing 737 MAX situation. The airline has claimed that Boeing should be doing more to converse with Boeing 737 MAX customers. Reuters also reports airline chairman, Sheikh Ahmed, said “more needed to be known about those fixes and the how long the plane grounding will last”.

flydubai airbus order
Despite both being owned by the Dubai government, flydubai is not part of the Emirates Group. Photo: flydubai

It seems as though airlines are also beginning to follow Norwegian’s lead. Just days after the 737 MAX was grounded, Norwegian publicly demanded that Boeing pay the airline compensation. Now, flydubai is following in Norwegian’s footsteps. Mr Ahmed said “I have to ask [for compensation]. It is my right. I didn’t ground those 14 aircraft”

Is an Airbus order on the horizon?

With flydubai requiring aircraft in order to expand, it seems as though the airline is not keen on the current state of affairs. As things stand, flydubai is unsure when to expect that its Boeing 737 MAX aircraft will fly again.

flydubai airbus order
flydubai could look at placing an A320 order with Airbus. Photo: flydubai

As a result, the airline has had to ground up to 15 flights per day. This is something that no carrier would be pleased with. However, Mr Ahmed told reporters that the circumstances had allowed him to talk to Airbus. The Airbus A320 is the Boeing 737’s biggest rival.

As flydubai is one of Boeing’s largest 737 MAX customers, any change of order, whether partial or full, to its rivals would come as a blow. If the big customers are not prepared to take the aircraft, it could knock the confidence of some smaller carriers. We have already seen Air Samoa reject their Boeing 737 MAX delivery.

Do you think flydubai should switch to the Airbus A320? Let us know in the comments.

9 comments
  1. Yes i think that FlyDubai should switch to the Airbus A320 at least for a few years until all is fine with those Max Aircrafts because the Boeing Max will be a headache to manage in terms of pilots’training,clients to reassure etc
    Blaming LionAir and Ethiopian Airlines’ pilots like Boeing did is maybe ok in the US but it is not appreciated to say the least in other parts of the world like Europe,Africa,Arabic countries etc i believe.

  2. In fact it’s not to be understood that Boeing was so reluctant cleaning up problems straight after the first Max disaster.
    Except no one knows better what grounding of aircraft costs, not even talking about what this article is about: the ongoing expanding effects of reputational damage for the company.

    So as an outsider I can not understand that they did not got to work 96 hours in a daytimes frame to swiftly solve the problem in a minimum as possible time from the first moment ?

    On the other hand perhaps a more general consideration:
    where part of the problems might be related to costs saving measures, isn’t flying getting to cheap?
    These two aircraft dramatically crashed at sea and in agricultural land, not to be thought when it happened in highly populated areas ?

    Shouldn’t this be the wakeup call for the certification agencies and airlines of this world ?

  3. It would be prudent for airlines to purchase Airbus aircraft in place of their B737 Max aircraft. There are quite sound and fundamental reasons for this. Firstly, pilots trained in Airbus can very easily transfer to all types of Airbus (it’s a more complex training, but once trained, Airbus are very easy and more safe to fly). Secondly, it’s bad business policy to “put all your eggs in one basket”. Thirdly, the B737 Max is a compilation of bits and pieces that don’t fit well and consequently don’t work well. The fear of this (and the demonstrated over-touchy handling characteristics) is why engineers created the anti-stall system, now known to have driven these aircraft into the ground.

  4. The fundamental difference is software utilisation. Airbus uses software to reduce the workload of the crew, monitoring the system and to protect and prevent the the operational limits of the plane from exceeding. The basic plane is safe and stable.
    In the Boeing 737 Max, the basic plane is over 60 years old and the design of which does not make installing bigger and more fuel efficient engines easy. The design of the wings are too low to adopt any new engines due to lack of clearance with the ground. Instead of redesigning the plane to give the necessary clearance, Boeing took the cheap and faster route by shortening the pylon and moving the engine forward. This setup created in the aerodynamics of the plane and making it unstable under some flight conditions. In order to overcome the problem, Boeing came up with the MCAS software to prevent the plane from stalling at high AOA. This software has not been tested enough but was certified. So here we have Boeing using software to overcome an aerodynamically out of trim aircraft which is different from Airbus.
    Based on the above, the Airbus A320 family of planes are a safer plane and a better bet and FlyDubai should give it a serious consideration to buy the Airbus plane instead of the Boeing 737 MAX.

  5. Let US NOT FORGET. Remember the Airbus where the computers , which completely control Airbus Planes, would not allow the Engines to go to Max Thrust even though the Pilots commanded Full Thrust to go around but hit the Trees and crashed. This was due to Software that thought the Airplane was landing because of the low altitude.

    1. The pilot of af296 didn’t use toga instead of clb trust.if the throttle was in toga,the computer could be overrided.

  6. FlyDubai should NOT buy the Airbus. Boeing will fix the software and anything else they find wrong will be fixed correctly. I am confident Boeing will compensate the Airlines for the Plane being grounded. Boeing has admitted publicly to other software problems they have found and intend to fix Publicly when they could have just fixed the problem and kept quiet. The 737 MAX will be the best airplane ever before it is allowed to fly. To train to fly an Airbus, Pilots must totally learn to fly (control) an Airplane in a different way. Sidesticks (Joysticks) are not connected or do not move together like a Typical airplane yoke which to me means a lot of Pilots in simulators rather than flying real planes.

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