Alaska Operated Last Airbus A321neo Before Converting To All Boeing Fleet

Alaska Airlines has made a significant transition in its fleet composition. On September 30, 2023, the airline conducted its final flight with an Airbus A321neo, marking the end of its Airbus operations. This move is part of Alaska Airlines' strategic decision to operate an all-Boeing fleet.


The Final Flight

The final A321neo flight, AS1126, took off from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) at 18:50 and arrived at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) at 20:56. The aircraft operating this flight was N921VA, a 6.5-year-old aircraft first delivered to Virgin America in 2017 before joining Alaska a year later. Interestingly, flight trackers show the final flight circling over Burlingame near San Francisco - the site of Virgin America's headquarters - ensuring a meaningful send-off for the jet.

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The Transition to an All-Boeing Fleet

Alaska Airlines incorporated the A321neo into its fleet following its merger with Virgin America in 2018². However, exiting the leasing contracts for the A321neos will come at a significant cost. Despite this, the airline expects operational efficiency and improved economics with its single fleet of Boeing 737s. The airline is now officially an all-Boeing carrier, operating over 220 Boeing 737s. This includes the newer 737 MAX 9 - Alaska has firm orders for over 100 MAX aircraft - which includes the -8, -9, and -10 variants - as well as options for another 100.

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Alaska Airlines' decision to retire its Airbus A321neos and transition to an all-Boeing fleet is a significant move in the aviation industry. It highlights the airline's commitment to operational efficiency and economic improvement. As we continue to monitor this situation, it will be interesting to see how this transition impacts Alaska Airlines' operations and overall performance in the future.

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