For global Airlines, the previous year was a fresh start. However, some significant trends, particularly in the area of fleets, have accelerated. Carriers are strategic with their fleet plan and prioritize conducting more efficient and lower-cost operations by taking advantage of the opportunity to retire outdated aircraft. Versatility has been a significant aspect of this approach, and Boeing is on board and believes that pursuing a versatile aircraft portfolio will be a necessity in a post-crisis world.
It’s necessary to define versatility in this context before digging into the necessity for it. Boeing has divided versatility into three categories: capability, network flexibility, and fleet commonality. When it comes to fleet decisions, all three are important factors to consider. Power refers to the aircraft’s actual capabilities. This generally relates to passenger Airlines in the commercial world. Seating capacity, cargo capacity, range, fuel efficiency, infrastructure demands, and much more are all considered.
Airlines want to be able to deploy a jet like a single-aisle narrowbody on a short hop between big markets several times a day and then have the option to fly the plane on a more extended trip that takes several hours. Finally, a significant component of adaptability is familiarity. Airlines prefer to fly planes they are familiar with to reduce introduction costs for a specific aircraft. This is why some giant Boeing 737 Next Generation operators have decided to refresh their fleets with the 737 MAX.