Here’s How Many Boeing Planes Are On Order — and the Average Price of Each

Via Rich Duprey at Motley Fool here are the number of each family of planes that Boeing is building each month, their order backlog, and the average retail price of each plane type.

These are the average list prices for each family of aircraft. Within each family of aircraft there are different prices for different variants, for instance the Boeing 737-700 is listed cheapest at $82.4 million.

However airlines do not pay list prices roughly speaking you can assume that airlines are paying about half of list at least when ordering more than a couple of planes.

Historically technical specs went a long way towards selling planes and an airline might buy a pricier aircraft if it had better fuel efficiency. Now fuel efficiency — while important — is playing less of a driver in decision-making between any given new aircraft type (and new planes are generally pretty fuel efficient compared to older ones anyway) and much more comes down to price and the extent to which an aircraft manufacturer discounts.

To a certain extent, given how competitive the market for new planes is, if an airline makes a large order it’s reasonable to assume that the airline got a great deal and that the manufacturer that won the order may actually ‘lose’ economically especially for sales of their less popular models. They get a public win. They keep their production lines open, hoping for a day when conditions for the aircraft model improves. But they likely discounted so far that it may not be profitable to have sold the plane.

Order books list planes that will reliably be delivered and plenty that will never be delivered. Airline commitments are firm or soft, there may or may not be costs to cancelling or delaying delivery, and orders may wind up switched for some other plane.

Qatar just straight-up cancelled 4 Airbus A350 orders. When Boeing announced a 100 plane order from United for their 737 MAX 10 aircraft, it was really converting an existing order for 100 of their 737 MAX aircraft.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Are you on cocaine? Boeing made nearly $9Bn in EBITDA over the past 12 months. They are not selling planes at a loss.

  2. Gary – I love stories like this. Very interesting and very thoughtful. Thanks for posting!

    I hear so many stories about how production of the 747 is on its last leg. However, according to the chart, there is a backlog of 23. Granted, this is not a large number when compared to the other models. I’m assuming these are mostly cargo/freighter orders?

  3. @John commercial aircraft manufacturing is only one small piece of their business, and I’m not suggesting every sale is done at a loss.

  4. Even at their increased production rate, at the end if 2019 there will still be 3,010 737’s on order. Even if they increased production to 60 per month, it’ll still be a couple months into 2024 before they finish off what’s on order today.
    But I’m sure more will be ordered in the next 6 year….so how will they do this? Won’t they be getting obsolete by then?

  5. $BA has been the best stock to own on the market over the last year. They are doing an amazing job making money for their share holders.

  6. @John what would cocaine have to do with anything? If anything, it would make Gary sharper and his research even more thorough… at least get your insults right. Almost any other drug would have been more appropriate.

  7. Very interesting. How about some analysis on the other important part of a plane … the engines. Who’s doing what in that space across both Boeing and Airbus.

  8. For the commenter about Boeing not selling planes at a loss…..The B787 had a $25-30 BBBBillion cost overrun. They will build almost 1100 of those planes before it becomes profitable.

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