Southwest Just Took Delivery of Its Last-Ever Boeing 737 Next Gen

Oct 2, 2018

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.

It’s the end of an era for Southwest Airlines.

The low-cost carrier has officially closed out its orders on Boeing 737 Next Generation planes, which it has ordered since 1993.

Southwest’s all-Boeing 737 fleet received its last 737 Next Generation aircraft on Sunday and will be ordering only the new 737 MAX model of the narrow-body planes from here on out. (Next Generation is the over-arching name given to the -600, -700, -800 and -900 series of the 737.)

“We’ll continue to fly these airplanes for many, many years to come,” Southwest CEO Gary Kelly told airline employees on Monday, noting that the last NG order nonetheless marks “the end of an era for this workhorse airplane.’’

Southwest has already been flying 16 of the MAX 8 aircraft since August 2017. TPG‘s Emily McNutt flew Southwest’s 737 MAX 8 from Dallas to Houston in October 2017 and enjoyed the “extremely quiet cabin, comfortable mood lighting and new boarding music,” but didn’t like the narrower armrests. Overall, she found the MAX 8 to be a “comfortable and welcome product” for the budget airline.

The Dallas-based airline, which operates the largest fleet of 737s in the world, was a launch customer for the Next Generation 737 two and a half decades ago when it ordered 63 of the narrow-body aircraft from Boeing. Since the first 737NG was delivered to Southwest in 1997, the airline has grown its fleet to 512 of the -700 and 202 of the -800 aircraft.

Southwest has a current order of 237 of the MAX 8s and 30 of the MAX 7s with Boeing. The airline is expecting to receive its firs MAX 7 sometime in 2019. And the MAX aircraft will give Southwest the ability to go further than previous planes, and the more fuel efficient narrow-body could even possibly mean the airline saves on fuel costs, meaning potential lower fares for customers. The aircraft will also eventually be used on its Hawaii routes.

The single-aisle MAX aircraft is now Boeing’s largest source of profit.

H/T: Bloomberg

Featured image by Alberto Riva / The Points Guy.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.

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.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • 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
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
$250
Balance Transfer Fee
N/A
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.