American Airlines is now the first US carrier to return Boeing’s 737 Max to regular commercial service. The first flight for the recently recertified aircraft was from Miami International Airport for New York City’s LaGuardia Airport on Tuesday.
In November, the Federal Aviation Administration lifted a 20-month order grounding the jetliner following two fatal crashes that killed 346 people in 2019. The agency recertified the first 737 Max in December, clearing the way for the aircraft to return to service. Regulators in Europe and Brazil have also authorized the jet to fly again.
Brazilian low-cost carrier GOL was the first airline worldwide to resume Max flights earlier this month on selected domestic routes from Sao Paulo. American is the first carrier to return the aircraft to commercial service in the US, operating daily flights between Miami and New York. The airline says it will likely add more services in January.
Two other US carriers, United and Southwest, currently have the 737 Max in their fleets. United has announced plans to resume operations with the aircraft in February, while Southwest says it will be March before the airline returns the Max to service.
Meanwhile other carriers are lining up to place orders for the aircraft. Alaska Airlines recently added more 737-9s to Boeing’s order books, while earlier this month, budget carrier Ryanair bumped up its order to a total of 210 aircraft.