DUBAI, Nov 16 2021 – India’s Akasa Air has placed an order for 72 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft at the Dubai Airshow 2021. The order, which was being rumored in aviation circles for the past few weeks has now finally been confirmed.
Akasa Air is a yet to be launched “Ultra Low Cost Airline” and is backed by billionaire investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala. The airline expects to start domestic operations by the summer of 2022.
The order for 72 aircraft includes two variants – The 737 MAX 8 and the high density 737- 8-200, which can seat up to 200 passengers in a single class configuration. The order is valued at around 8 billion USD at list prices, although steep discounts are often offered to customers.
This order marks a major win for Boeing in the Indian aviation market which is dominated by Airbus A320 family narrowbody aircraft. The only other airlines currently flying that operate Boeing narrowbody aircraft are SpiceJet, Air India Express and a handful of aircraft by Vistara.
Boeing put out the following tweet and press release announcing the Akasa Air order.
Akasa Air’s order will also mark the debut of the high density Boeing 737- 8-200 in the Indian market. As previously mentioned, this variant can fit up to 200 passengers in a single class configuration. The increased number of seats is made possible by reducing galley space and using slimline seats. The higher passenger number also necessitates the provision of an additional pair of emergency exits aft of the wing. Irish low cost carrier Ryanair was the launch customer of this high density variant.