Air Canada Removes Boeing 737 MAX From Schedule Until February, a Month Later Than U.S. Counterparts
Updated: Jan 11, 2020
Confidence in the return of the Boeing 737 MAX in North America by January seems to be wavering. After extensions from American and United, Air Canada now pegs the return date at February 14, 2020.
Wednesday, on United Airlines' third quarter investor’s conference call, company CEO Oscar Munoz inadvertently made news by expressing uncertainty as to when the Boeing 737 MAX would return to service. Frankly, we were surprised that this was newsworthy, because it seems obvious that nobody really knows. After all there are so many stakeholders involved, making the FAA recertification complicated, not to mention subsequent recertification endorsements from Transport Canada, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and other regulators.
In a press release this afternoon, Air Canada announced they would be removing the Boeing 737 MAX from their schedule until February 14, 2020, due to operational considerations, as they launch the first phase of a new reservation system next month. After the FAA recertifies the aircraft, Transport Canada will also independently approve the return. Transport Canada works closely with both the FAA and EASA, so the recertification will necessarily come after the aircraft is approved to fly in the U.S. In Wednesday’s announcement, Air Canada Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer, Lucie Guillemette stated,
“Today we are extending to February 14, 2020 the removal of the Boeing 737 Max from our operating schedule. We are taking this prudent step as a result of the ongoing regulatory uncertainty about the timing of the aircraft returning to service. The extension will give us scheduling predictability through the implementation of the first phase of our new reservation system and the required stability as we prepare the second phase of the system roll-out, introducing it into the airport environment. As a result of these and other measures we are taking, including leasing two additional wide-body aircraft through at least the March Break, customers can continue to book with full confidence on Air Canada."
Source: Air Canada