Boeing [NYSE: BA] and Ryanair, Europe's largest low-fare carrier, announced that the airline has exercised five order options for Next-Generation
737s in support of its continuing growth.
Ryanair now has 230 Boeing 737s on firm order; delivery of these latest airplanes begins in the spring of 2007. The options are part of an order Ryanair placed in 2002 and extended in 2005.
"The Boeing 737-800 has the best technical reliability and ensures that Ryanair is the number one on-time major airline in Europe," said Ryanair Chief Executive Officer Michael O'Leary. "In addition, it has the lowest unit operating cost. The addition of these five aircraft will continue to enable us to develop more new routes across Europe and bring low fares to many more European consumers."
The new 737-800s will be fitted with Blended Winglets, which will improve fuel efficiency by up to three percent on Ryanair's network, increase range and reduce takeoff noise.
"The Ryanair story is truly remarkable," said Boeing Commercial Airplanes President and Chief Executive Officer Alan Mulally. "It's great to be partnered with this successful low-cost leader, which is bringing exceptional value to travelers across Europe with our capable and comfortable 737."
Ryanair operates a fleet of 91 airplanes on 229 routes across 20 countries. It employs 2,700 people and expects to carry approximately 35 million scheduled passengers this year.