United Airlines has announced an order for 100 Boeing 787 Dreamliners with options to purchase 100 more – the largest purchase agreement for wide-bodies by a US carrier in commercial aviation history.

United expects to take delivery of the new widebody planes between 2024 and 2032 and can choose among the 787-8, 9 or 10 models, providing flexibility to support a wide range of routes.

United also exercised options to purchase 44 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft for delivery between 2024 and 2026 and ordered 56 more MAX aircraft for delivery between 2027 and 2028.

Two new jets a week

The airline now expects to take delivery of about 700 new narrow and wide-body aircraft by the end of 2032, including an average of more than two every week in 2023 and more than three every week in 2024.

Approximately 100 planes of the new wide-body order are expected to replace older Boeing 767 and Boeing 777 aircraft, with all 767 aircraft removed from the United fleet by 2030, resulting in up to an expected 25 per cent decrease in carbon emissions per seat for the new planes compared to the older planes they are expected to replace.

“United emerged from the pandemic as the world’s leading global airline and the flag carrier of the United States,” said United CEO Scott Kirby.

“This order further solidifies our lead and creates new opportunities for our customers, employees and shareholders by accelerating our plan to connect more people to more places around the globe and deliver the best experience in the sky.”

Accelerating fleet modernisation

“With this investment in its future fleet, the 737 MAX and 787 will help United accelerate its fleet modernisation and global growth strategy,” said Stan Deal, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

“The Boeing team is honoured by United’s trust in our family of airplanes to connect people and transport cargo around the world for decades to come.”
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