American Airlines still has fewer mainline aircraft flying than they did before the pandemic. They retired their Boeing 757s, 767s, Airbus A330s (that they’ve even still been paying on) and Embraer 190s during the pandemic. And they’ve kept Boeing 737s parked in the desert.
However they’re bringing back some of those 737s this year, and will take delivery of 19 new narrowbody and 4 widebody aircraft in 2023. All told they expect to end 2023 with more active mainline aircraft than their average for 2019, but still fewer aircraft total.
That’s because so many regional jets remain parked, largely due to lack of pilots to fly them. Airline CEO Robert Isom said during the carrier’s fourth quarter earnings call that it’ll be “a couple of years” before they can grow pilot staffing to operate all of their regional jets.
These are the last 2 remaining A320neos on order. They have an order placed for 50 Airbus A321XLRs that are supposed to begin delivery next year. There are also 88 737 MAX 8s still on order. The four 787-s to be delivered this year complete that acquisition – and then next year American should start receiving the first of its 30 new Boeing 787-9s.
Coming In 2024, Credit: American Airlines
The XLRs and 787-9s will feature new business class suites with doors, and kick off the retrofit of Boeing 777-300ERs with new business class seats and the elimination of Flagship First Class.