Ryanair set to expand, orders 300 new Boeings

Ryanair has announced a new $40bn deal with Boeing for 300 new aircraft, which could see the Irish budget airline almost double its passenger capacity over the next ten years. The new Boeing 737-Max-10 planes are 10% larger than Ryanair’s latest fleet, offering increased fuel efficiency and lower costs per passenger. Ryanair has ordered 150 planes outright with an option for a further 150, with deliveries expected between 2027 and 2033.

Replacing Ryanair’s older 737NG planes, the new Max-10 aircraft will add 40 seats per plane, significantly boosting fuel efficiency. Ryanair expects to create over 10,000 jobs as a result of the deal and grow its passenger numbers from 168 million to 300 million annually by 2034.

The airline’s CEO, Michael O’Leary, described the new, fuel-efficient planes as “greener technology” offering 21% more seats, burning 20% less fuel and being 50% quieter than their B737NG predecessors. Ryanair expects to generate significant revenue and traffic growth across Europe and pass on unit cost savings to passengers in the form of lower airfares.

Despite two crashes that grounded the planes for safety checks and certification, Ryanair’s appetite for the Max model remained undiminished. The airline’s group CEO praised the partnership with Boeing, calling it “one of the most productive in commercial aviation history”. Ryanair airline CEO Eddie Wilson said that the new planes would become “even more important from a sustainability point of view”.

He noted that there were opportunities for future growth in the Eastern Mediterranean, North Africa and Scandinavia. Wilson also expected the aviation industry to recover when geopolitical tensions abated and when GDP started growing again. The order is set to be ratified by Ryanair shareholders in September.

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