American Airlines CEO: ‘Politics’ May Be Factor In Clearing 737 MAX to Fly
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
American Airlines CEO Doug Parker told employees at a town hall meeting last week that the airline may have to wait until October before it brings Boeing 737 MAXes back to its gates.
According to CNBC, which reviewed audio of the meeting, Parker said that American would likely announce such a move in the coming weeks if it becomes necessary. The airline had previously planned to resume 737 MAX service on Sept. 3. Its schedule shows that the world’s biggest airline is making a large bet on the MAX returning to service in September.
The global fleet of 737 MAX aircraft has been grounded since March following two fatal crashes of Boeing’s new workhorse, which left 346 dead.
Boeing has been working with regulators, airlines and other stakeholders to update the aircraft’s flight-control software, addressing a system that is believed to have contributed to both disasters.
CNBC reported that Parker told his employees that an “absolute software fix” is close to being certified, but said he believes the Federal Aviation Administration is hesitant to certify it before other regulators are ready to do the same. “I think as much as anything now it may be politics,” Parker said, according to CNBC. “I don’t think the FAA wants to be alone in doing this.”
Even if the FAA clears MAXes for flights later this summer, airlines will need time to re-train their crews on the updated systems. American will also begin scheduling personnel to work flights in September as early as next month. Taken together, those constraints could both contribute to American to further delaying the MAX’s return to service.
Featured image courtesy of American Airlines.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 50,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new card in your first three months of card membership. Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants with your card within the first 3 months of membership.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Earn 50,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
- Plus, earn up to $100 back in statement credits for eligible purchases at US restaurants with your card within the first 3 months of membership.
- Accelerate your path to Medallion Status, with Status Boost®. Plus, in 2021 you can earn even more bonus Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) to help you reach Medallion Status.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees