Southwest, American Airlines Extend Boeing 737 MAX Cancellations into August

by Daniel McCarthy
Southwest, American Airlines Extend Boeing 737 MAX Cancellations into August

American Airlines is adjusting about 100 daily flights through Aug. 19. Rick Beauregard /

American Airlines has joined Southwest in canceling all of its MAX-8 related flights into August.

About 100 daily flights through Aug. 19 will be impacted by the decision, which was made to give American, and its travelers, appropriate planning time ahead of a busy summer travel season, American CEO Doug Parker said in a statement announcing the news.

“By extending our cancellations through the summer, we can plan more reliably for the peak travel season and provide confidence to our customers and team members when it comes to their travel plans.”

American said it remains confident that the MAX will be recertified prior to Aug. 15.

“We remain confident that the impending software updates, along with the new training elements Boeing is developing for the MAX, will lead to recertification of the aircraft soon,” Parker added.

American’s decision means both it and Southwest Airlines will not fly any Boeing 737 MAX airplanes through at least Aug. 5, the date through which Southwest has canceled. Southwest’s schedule included about 160 flights per day on the aircraft.

Southwest, too, made the decision to limit disruptions during the summer travel season. “While the timing for the return to service of the MAX remains unclear, what is very clear is our commitment to operate a reliable schedule and provide the famous customer service you expect from us. Our revised summer schedule allows us to accomplish those objectives,” Southwest President Tom Nealon said.

Other airlines impacted by the groundings have all updated their schedules already, including Air Canada, which released updated flight schedules through May 1 earlier this month after canceling all of its Boeing 737 MAX service through June 30.

The carrier said that the new schedule will cover 98% of its previous planned service and will provide “certainty for our customers so they can continue to book and travel with confidence on Air Canada," said Lucie Guillemette, executive vice president and chief commercial officer at Air Canada.

Air Canada also said that it is in the midst of updating its June schedule.

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