SkyTeam member Continental Airlines has placed a firm order with Boeing for 27 more airliners, including eight new 777s and 19 737NGs, enabling the US major “to pursue growth opportunities”.
This new order brings the carrier’s total firm commitments to 111 new Boeing aircraft - 25 787s, eight 777s and 78 737s for delivery over the next six years. Additionally, Continental has options to purchase a total of 102 additional Boeing aircraft.
Continental, which currently flies 20 777s, will use the eight additional widebodies announced today for long-haul international routes, such as the New York Newark-Shanghai route that is scheduled to start in 2009.
The need for international widebodies is also driven by the carrier’s launch of service to London Heathrow next month, which represents the company’s largest-ever expansion into a single airport in one day, says Continental.
The new 737s, meanwhile, will give Continental the flexibility to continue to grow “while replacing less efficient 737 Classic aircraft, such as the company’s 737-300 and 737-500 aircraft”, it says.