Turkish Airlines Ungrounds Its Boeing 737 MAX 9 Fleet

Having resumed service with its Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft six weeks ago, Turkish national flag carrier Turkish Airlines has now reactivated its single Boeing 737 MAX 9. After spending two years in storage at Istanbul Airport (IST), the aircraft with the registration number TC-LYA took to the skies again on May 22, 2021, to perform a test flight before returning to passenger service.

Turkish 737 MAX
Turkish Airlines only has one MAX 9.Photo: Getty Images

After detecting no issues with the plane, Turkish Airlines reintroduced the plane three days later to its active lineup. According to ch-aviation, the aircraft’s first passenger flight was a short one-hour five-minute domestic trip from Istanbul Airport (IST) to Izmir Adnan Menderes Airport (ADB) in Izmir, Anatolia.

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The MAX 9 is based at IST

In the preceding days leading up to today, the aircraft has been deployed on domestic flights to Ankara Esenboğa Airport (ESB) and Izmir Adnan Menderes Airport (ADB) and on international flights to the following airports:

  • Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport (LYS) in France
  • Kuwait International Airport (KWI) in Kuwait
  • Catania Fontanarossa Airport (CTA) on the Italian island of Sicily

Following the above flights, TC-LYA returned to its operating base at Istanbul Airport (IST).

Turkish Airlines has 11 Boeing 737 MAX 8

TC-LCA was delivered to Turkish Airlines on August 17, 2018. The aircraft can seat 151 passengers in a two-class 3+3 configuration made up of 16 business class and 135 economy class seats. ch-aviation lists TC-LCA as being in active service.

TC-LCB was delivered to Turkish Airlines on November 29, 2018. The aircraft can seat 151 passengers in a two-class 3+3 configuration made up of 16 business class and 135 economy class seats. ch-aviation lists TC-LCB as being stored at IST.

TC-LCC was delivered to Turkish Airlines on November 5, 2018. The aircraft can seat 151 passengers in a two-class 3+3 configuration made up of 16 business class and 135 economy class seats. ch-aviation lists TC-LCC as being stored at IST.

TC-LCD was delivered to Turkish Airlines on September 30, 2019.  The aircraft can seat 151 passengers in a two-class 3+3 configuration made up of 16 business class and 135 economy class seats. ch-aviation lists TC-LCD as being active.

TC-LYA test flight
TC-LYA made a test flight on May 22. Image: RadarBox.com

TC-LCE was delivered to Turkish Airlines on November 30, 2018. The aircraft can seat 151 passengers in a two-class 3+3 configuration made up of 16 business class and 135 economy class seats. ch-aviation lists TC-LCE as being active.

TC-LCF was delivered to Turkish Airlines on September 22, 2018. The aircraft can seat 151 passengers in a two-class 3+3 configuration made up of 16 business class and 135 economy class seats. ch-aviation lists TC-LCF as being stored at IST.

TC-LCG was delivered to Turkish Airlines on December 20, 2018. The aircraft can seat 151 passengers in a two-class 3+3 configuration made up of 16 business class and 135 economy class seats. ch-aviation lists TC-LCG as being stored at IST.

TC-LCJ was delivered to Turkish Airlines on February 1, 2019. The aircraft can seat 151 passengers in a two-class 3+3 configuration made up of 16 business class and 135 economy class seats. ch-aviation lists TC-LCJ as being stored at IST.

Turkish Airlines Ungrounds Its Boeing 737 MAX 9 Fleet
Turkish has 11 MAX 8s and one MAX 9. Photo: Boeing

TC-LCK was delivered to Turkish Airlines on February 20, 2019. The aircraft can seat 151 passengers in a two-class 3+3 configuration made up of 16 business class and 135 economy class seats. ch-aviation lists TC-LCK as being active.

TC-LCL was delivered to Turkish Airlines on February 22, 2019. The aircraft can seat 151 passengers in a two-class 3+3 configuration made up of 16 business class and 135 economy class seats. ch-aviation lists TC-LCL as being stored at IST.

TC-LCM was delivered to Turkish Airlines on February 21, 2019. The aircraft can seat 151 passengers in a two-class 3+3 configuration made up of 16 business class and 135 economy class seats. ch-aviation lists TC-LCM as being stored at IST.

Turkish Airlines has one Boeing 737 MAX 9

TC-LYA was delivered to Turkish Airlines on March 1, 2019. The aircraft can seat 169 passengers in a two-class 3+3 configuration made up of 16 business class and 153 economy class seats. ch-aviation lists TC-LYA as being in active service.

TC-LYA Izmir
TC-LYA flew its first passenger flight in two years between IST and ADB.Image: Radarbox.com

Along with the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft listed above, Turkish Airlines has firm orders with Boeing for a further 45 Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft and eight Boeing 737 MAX 9 aircraft.

Earlier this year, Turkish Airlines said that it would take 40 of the ordered aircraft and convert them into options exercisable through the end of this year. The delivery of the remaining MAX aircraft has been deferred, with no revised timeline for their delivery being announced.

Have you flown on Turkish Airlines sole Boeing 737 MAX 9? If so, please tell us what you thought about the plane in the comments.

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