Source Devesh Agarwal via bangaloreaviation.com
Boeing has confirmed that it does not expect the grounded 737 MAX to return to service before “mid-2020”. In a statement released on January 21, the company cautioned that this time-line is an estimate, and entry in to service will be finally determined by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), and other regulators across the world like Europe’s EASA and India’s DGCA. “…in order to help our customers and suppliers plan their operations, we periodically provide them with our best estimate of when regulators will begin to authorize the ungrounding of the 737 MAX.” the statement says. Since the FAA will lead regulators in un-grounding the MAX, US carriers like American Airlines, Southwest Airlines, and United Airlines will be amongst the first in the world to re-start services with the aircraft. Executives at airlines have estimated they will need between one and two months, if not more, to prepare their grounded aircraft, complete the needed pilot training, and integrate the MAX into their network schedule. Assuming all goes according to plan, we estimate that the 737 MAX will begin to enter revenue service only by September 2020 or later. Spicejet impacted Other aviation regulators, including India’s DGCA have indicated they will independently look at the MAX re-entry into service, which will further add to the timeline. Indian low-fare carrier Spicejet, who uses the 737, the world’s best-selling narrow-body aircraft, as its fleet mainstay, will miss the MAX for peak summer travel season. We expect the airline will augment its fleet using short term wet-leases which will drive up costs for the already stressed airline.