Could Ryanair Be About To Place The Biggest Aircraft Order Of 2020?

Could Ryanair be about to place the most significant aircraft order of 2020 so far? According to the Irish Independent, this would be the case as the airline eyes another Boeing 737 MAX order to add to its existing commitments.

Ryanair, Boeing, 737 MAX
Could Ryanair be about to make the largest order of 2020? Photo: Boeing

We’re starting to see real progress being made concerning returning the Boeing 737 MAX to service. The Federal Aviation Administration, Transport Canada, and the European Union Aviation Safety Agency have all now completed test flights of Boeing’s fixes. The aircraft has even been personally flown by Steve Dickson, the FAA’s administrator. With the aircraft due to return to service, some airlines are gearing up to resume deliveries.

Another Ryanair MAX order?

This year, only Enter Air has placed an order for the 737 MAX, with far more cancellations for the type having been registered. It seems as though things may be about to change, though. According toThe Independent, Ryanair is considering an order for between 150-200 new Boeing 737 MAX aircraft.

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It wouldn’t come as a massive surprise if Ryanair did place another Boeing 737 MAX order. In February, Simple Flying reported that the Irish low-cost carrier was eyeing an order for the type. During the airline’s Q4 results call, the airline group’s CEO, Michael O’Leary, said,

“We are already in discussions with Boeing. We have an offer on the table for an order for new MAX 10s, which is a 230-seat aircraft.”

Ryanair, Boeing 737 MAX, Refunds
Ryanair’s first 737 MAX aircraft are waiting to be delivered. Photo: Getty Images

A Ryanair spokesperson commented,

“We don’t comment on rumour or speculation.”

How would this fit in with the current order?

According to Boeing’s current order books, Ryanair has 135 outstanding MAX orders, with zero delivered as yet. The first two aircraft deliveries were scheduled to be delivered in April 2019. Of course, the type was grounded in March of that year, meaning that the deliveries have not yet been possible.

Ryanair’s existing MAX order is for a tailored variation of the 737 MAX 8. This variation has an additional pair of emergency exits behind the wings to allow for an increased number of seats. This type still requires additional certification on top of the MAX’s main recertification.

There are many ‘white tail’ Boeing 737 MAX aircraft. These are airframes that Boeing has built, but where the order has been canceled before delivery. However, the additional emergency exit on its variation means that Ryanair won’t be able to take these aircraft.

Ryanair, Boeing 737 MAX 10, New Order
O’Leary is one of the larger Boeing 737 MAX customers. Photo: Getty Images

If Ryanair were to order the 737 MAX 10, it would possibly be able to take some of these whitetail aircraft. This would mean the airline wouldn’t have to wait in a queue for aircraft, something that has put the airline off of an Airbus order before. Ryanair would likely be able to gain favorable pricing on a Boeing 737 MAX order given the lack of other orders due to both the grounding and the other current situation affecting the aviation industry.

Do you think that Ryanair will order additional Boeing 737 MAX aircraft? Let us know what you think and why in the comments!