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Should United Cancel Its Order for 100 – 737 MAX 10s, & Order the A321neo?

Should United Cancel Its Order for 100 – 737 MAX 10s, & Order the A321neo?

Old Mar 22, 19, 1:42 am
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Should United Cancel Its Order for 100 – 737 MAX 10s, & Order the A321neo?

In light of the 737 Max Disasters, should United cancel its order for the 737 MAX 10, and order the A321neo? ( & maybe some A220s)

See also:
Could UA use 321neo to replace 757 / 767 as HA is doing for mainland flights?

United Considering 737 Max 10 and A321neo

Last edited by BF263533; Mar 27, 19 at 1:00 am Reason: Add A220 reference & links to A321neo threads
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Old Mar 22, 19, 4:50 am
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Rational decisions should not be made until conclusions have been reached.
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Old Mar 22, 19, 5:22 am
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Yes, they should switch to the A321 and get it delivered with fewer seats per frame. Then we'd get both wider seats and more legroom.

But UA will act in its own interests, not those of its customers. It clearly has a sweetheart deal with Boeing, only using Airbus to test prices for them. They will always buy Boeing in the new market whether or not the product is superior or at a better price point.
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Old Mar 22, 19, 8:21 am
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Yes. Passenger safety first.
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Old Mar 22, 19, 8:42 am
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It should be on the table IMO and depending how things evolve ... I think it is a real threat.
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Old Mar 22, 19, 9:02 am
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Originally Posted by lhrsfo View Post
Yes, they should switch to the A321 and get it delivered with fewer seats per frame. Then we'd get both wider seats and more legroom.
Yeah we don't even need to talk about safety to reach this conclusion from the passenger's perspective. The 321 is a better aircraft for passenger comfort due to the wider cabin.
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Old Mar 22, 19, 9:23 am
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A321neo orders are backed up for years (as are new MAX orders). Even if UA wanted to switch, they wouldn't see any of these frames for 5 years or more.
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Old Mar 22, 19, 9:38 am
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The Max series won't look (or be) snakebit forever. Three years ago Volkswagen looked doomed because of the TDI emissions scandal, and there was talk of VW exiting the US market in a hail of criticism. Today that is mostly forgotten and VW sales have rebounded. The 787 had the longest, most tortured, error-filled gestation period of any Boeing commercial aircraft, its announcement and first revenue service were nearly a decade apart (2003-2011, with a fake "rollout ceremony" in 2007), and then the FAA grounded it in 2013 over the battery fires, but today all that is forgotten as well. Other airliners from the Comet to DC10 had long service lives following catastrophes related to design flaws.

So calm down.
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Old Mar 22, 19, 9:43 am
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Neither. Buy up all the 757-200's and 767-300's (like they did with ex Hawaiian) they can get their hands on, re-manufacture / refurb like the Air Force does with old B52s, add new interiors, and just keep them flying. That will hold them till something else like new MOM comes along
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Old Mar 22, 19, 9:48 am
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Originally Posted by seenitall View Post
A321neo orders are backed up for years (as are new MAX orders). Even if UA wanted to switch, they wouldn't see any of these frames for 5 years or more.
That Airbus backlog is also going to get worse. But waiting a few years vs. flying an airplane that no one wants to fly in, and the waiting seems like a reasonable trade off.

Even when Boeing addresses the issues, which I’m not convinced they are making a full effort to do from what I’ve seen, there’s public perception problem which could last a lot longer. Guaruda just canceled their MAX orders, and their statement cited customer confidence in the aircraft. Obviously, they’re in indonesia, which is particularly sensitive due to that being Lion Air’s home. But Boeing has a real issue. My belief is that Boeing will see a lot more cancelations, especially if the grounding goes beyond more than a couple of months. And Id guess there is a good chance the program makes little $ for Boeing due to compensation they’ll need to pay out, order cancelations as well as being forced to reduce pricing to get people to consider it any longer. I’d bet there will be real pressure to eliminate order cancelation penalties as well.

Airbus, despite their backlog, probably has a huge sales advantage now, and yes, UA should consider buying from them. I’ve always liked the 320s better anyway. UA May have more of its interests as a company in mind, but don’t forget that if customers don’t have a feeling that they’ll be safe onboard the aircraft they fly in, then there might be no airline left, so the Airbus may fit quickly into UAs interests.

Either way, it will be interesting to see how this all shakes out in the weeks, months and years ahead.
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Old Mar 22, 19, 10:18 am
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Heck no. I don't like the MAX but that's because of the stupidly teeny bathrooms. I'll happily be a passenger on any variant of the 737 before any Airbus aircraft. Period.
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Old Mar 22, 19, 10:38 am
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I suspect that delivery date is an extremely important consideration. At the moment, we don't know how long it will take Boeing to "fix" the MAX and begin deliveries again. (So far production seems to be continuing.) Unless UA can get an Airbus option to get some new aircraft fairly quickly, for now it seems better to stick with Boeing.
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Old Mar 22, 19, 11:03 am
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Originally Posted by lhrsfo View Post
Yes, they should switch to the A321 and get it delivered with fewer seats per frame. Then we'd get both wider seats and more legroom.

But UA will act in its own interests, not those of its customers. It clearly has a sweetheart deal with Boeing, only using Airbus to test prices for them. They will always buy Boeing in the new market whether or not the product is superior or at a better price point.
The A321neo is vastly superior aircraft to the MAX10. The cabin is 7" wider, allowing for seats that are 1" wider, but also for higher ceilings and a more open feel. The boarding time for a 737-900/MAX9 is already a major problem, as the plane is just so cramped. But adding another three rows of coach (the stretch from the existing -9/MAX9) will just increase boarding issues while making the existing lack of bathrooms even worse.

Given the additional complexity of the telescoping landing gear, and that the MCAS system is going to have to work even harder to prevent this thing flying like a brick, I think there are some real risks in the MAX10.

That said, United is not interested in passenger comfort, and will go with fleet commonality over all, since its basic approach to its domestic fleet is ULCC.

But were I Boeing, I would be concerned about how the MAX10 is going to work out longer term... They better be 2000% sure there are no issues with the landing gear....

Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
Yeah we don't even need to talk about safety to reach this conclusion from the passenger's perspective. The 321 is a better aircraft for passenger comfort due to the wider cabin.
+1

Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
I suspect that delivery date is an extremely important consideration. At the moment, we don't know how long it will take Boeing to "fix" the MAX and begin deliveries again. (So far production seems to be continuing.) Unless UA can get an Airbus option to get some new aircraft fairly quickly, for now it seems better to stick with Boeing.
United is an important enough customer for Airbus to pick off that they would come up with some slots. There is a surprising amount of flexibility for the right customer. However, Airbus is not going to give United the same ulta-cheapo price that Boeing gave UA and prized slots.
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Old Mar 22, 19, 11:07 am
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Originally Posted by ExplorerWannabe View Post
Heck no. I don't like the MAX but that's because of the stupidly teeny bathrooms. I'll happily be a passenger on any variant of the 737 before any Airbus aircraft. Period.
What do you do if UA tries to fly you on an Airbus? Wait for a Boeing?

If you really travel on business, I doubt it. There's not time for nonsense like this, you have to fly the plane that shows up.
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Old Mar 22, 19, 12:41 pm
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If the global economy weakens, as some signals indicate, expect that backlog for both Airbus and Boeing to shrink. Even now, when the economy is fairly strong in most respects, airlines around the world still struggle to turn a profit. This, along with the rise of marginal manufacturers in Russia, Japan, China etc. will probably give airlines some choice and flexibility in which aircraft they order in the near future.
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