Garuda To Take Boeing 737 MAX After All

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Garuda Indonesia made waves when they announced that they would be cancelling their Boeing 737 MAX order. Now, it looks as though the airline will make a U-turn as it is indeed due to receive the 737 MAX. The order will, however, look slightly different from before.

Garuda Boeing 737 MAX
In March, Garuda Indonesia cancelled their remaining order for 49 Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft. Photo: Boeing

Garuda Indonesia had ordered a total of 50 of the Boeing 737 MAX. At the time of their grounding, only one aircraft had been delivered. The carrier announced back in March that it would cancel its outstanding aircraft order. This was due to a loss of public trust in the craft.

As is now well known, two Boeing 737 MAX aircraft were involved in deadly accidents over the past year. The first affected a Lion Air Boeing 737 MAX 8 on departure from Jakarta. 189 lives were lost during the accident on October 29th.

The second accident involved an Ethiopian Airlines aircraft, also a Boeing 737 MAX 8. This accident occurred on March 10th, with 157 lives lost in this instance. As such, it is no wonder that public confidence in the aircraft is particularly low.

Different 737 MAX Order

It seems as though, despite cancelling the order, Garuda will accept Boeing jets after all. The Nikkei Asian Review (NAR) reported that Garuda “believes in Boeing aircraft and its technological capabilities.” In fact, this quote comes from an interview with Garuda’s President, Ari Ashkara.

The quote is interesting, as the same gentleman previously commented “So even though they have fixed the MAX 8 system, that passenger confidence is gone. So we asked for it to be cancelled.” In his interview with NAR, he also told the publication “We will replace the orders with Boeing’s MAX 10s and 787s”.

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Garuda Boeing 737 MAX
Garuda Indonesia should now receive a number of Boeing 737 MAX 10 aircraft (not pictured). Photo: Boeing

So far both accidents have involved the Boeing 737 MAX 8, although the manufacturer and FAA are investigating all variants. Meanwhile, all of Boeing’s 737 MAX aircraft have been grounded. One Mile At A Time points out that the Boeing 737 MAX 10 will carry more passengers than the MAX 8, however, sacrifices some of its range in return. This, in turn, lowers the airline’s seat per mile cost.

What about the Boeing 787?

The Boeing 787 will fit well into Garuda’s long-haul fleet. It would accompany Boeing 777s and Airbus A330s according to AirFleets.net. As such, the Boeing 787 will be used to help Garuda Indonesia to expand its overseas flight network.

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Garuda Boeing 737 MAX
Garuda Indonesia’s new Boeing 787 aircraft will join existing Boeing 777 aircraft. Photo: Boeing

It is currently unknown whether Garuda is set to receive the Boeing 787-8, 787-9, or 787-10. It is also unclear what numbers of Boeing 737 MAXs and Boeing 787s will be received by the airline, nor what will happen to the lone Boeing 737 MAX 8 in the fleet. As such, Simple Flying has contacted Garuda International requesting a comment.

What do you think of the comments that Garuda Indonesia will receive Boeing 737 MAXs after all? Is the Boeing 787 the right aircraft for the airline? Let us know in the comments!

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