Qatar Paints Final Touches on Boeing Order
Qatar Airways completed an order for 102 airplanes with Boeing today, becoming the launch customer for the B777X freighter in addition to adding B737 MAX aircraft to its fleet.
The total order is for up to 50 B737 MAX aircraft including 25 confirmed orders for the B737 MAX 10 and options for 25 more. Then, it’s adding up to 50 B777x freighters, including 34 confirmed orders and options for 16 more. Lastly, it’s taking two current generation B777 freighters as well.
The 777X freighter is the cargo version of the B777X passenger jet that’s expected to enter service late next year. The freighter version of the aircraft is expected to come off the production line in 2027 at the earliest and will be the world’s largest twin-engine cargo jet.
The list prices of the 102 planes purchased by Qatar come in at a cool $34 billion, but as always, the airline likely saw significant savings over the list price for placing such a large order. It’s also being reported that a new partnership between Boeing and Sherwin Williams will see each airplane come with a complimentary bucket of paint to allow the carrier to perform its own touch-ups, as needed.
JetBlue’s Jaded JFK Job
JetBlue Airways had a tough day at its hometown airport on Sunday as it struggled to bounce back from a snowstorm that hit New York on Saturday. The carrier proactively canceled hundreds of flights ahead of time to account for the storm, essentially shutting down its JFK operation on Saturday. But scores of passengers were left stuck on their planes after landing at JFK Sunday as JetBlue ran out of gates and staff to handle arriving flights.
As the situation worsened Sunday evening, the airline began to divert flights away from JFK, including subjecting some passengers the undignified horror of being forced to Newark. At the peak of irregular operations last night, JetBlue had nearly 20 planes scattered around JFK having landed with nowhere to go.
As it attempts to recover, JetBlue has canceled about 15% of its operation on Monday. The Port Authority in a statement said JetBlue’s issues were due to the carrier’s own staffing shortcomings and not directly related. The Port Authority was also seen violently kicking several passengers while they were also down.
United Flight Lands with More Passengers Than at Takeoff
With two hours left on United Flight 977 from Accra to Washington/Dulles this past Saturday, a passenger went into labor and eventually gave birth to a healthy baby 30,000 feet above the Atlantic Ocean just off the coast of Atlantic Canada.
The flight had a Ghanian doctor on-board the flight as a passenger who helped with the delivery along with United’s flight attendants, of which one was a registered nurse. The flight landed at about 5:30 a.m. at Dulles where the mom and baby were helped off the aircraft and sent to a local hospital.
Upon arrival, United made sure its new passenger had a MileagePlus number and credited it the 5,143 miles for the flight. It also sent the mother a bill for 2/11 of the full-fare economy price for the ACC-IAD route since the baby did fly for the final two hours of the 11 hour journey as a regular passenger. There’s no truth to the rumor that the carrier offered the mom free flights for life if she was willing to name the baby “Newark.”
- Alaska is adding dynamic award pricing when redeeming on American.
- China Airlines placed an order to add four more B777 freighters.
- easyJet is hiring pilots.
- GOL took delivery of seven B737 MAX 8s.
- Kuwait Airways has suspended service to Iraq for a week.
- Lynx Air will do just fine in the crowded Canadian LCC market, according to Lynx Air.
- Philippine Airlines is returning to Tel Aviv in April for the first time since the 1950s. Twice-weekly service from Manila to Tel Aviv begins April 6.
- Q-Airlines secured an operating license in Pakistan (trust us, that’s not very difficult), and plans to begin operating later this spring because a new airline is exactly what Pakistan needs.
- Qantas opened its newest flight training center in Brisbane.
- Starlux took delivery of an A321neo.
The guy who invented velcro died.