Delta has entered into agreements to add 29 used Boeing 737-900ERs and lease seven used Airbus A350-900s as it continues to streamline and modernize its fleet.
The 36 additional aircraft will improve fuel efficiency and enhance the customer experience, while supporting Delta’s fleet renewal strategy focused on simplification, scale, size and sustainability.
“These aircraft are an investment in Delta’s future,” said Delta CEO Ed Bastian.
“As we look past the pandemic, Delta’s disciplined, innovative approach to fleet renewal positions us for growth as travel demand returns, while enhancing the customer experience and supporting our sustainability commitments.”
The COVID-19 pandemic provided an opportunity to simplify Delta’s fleet and accelerate retirements of 18 widebody 777s, and the MD-88 and MD-90 narrowbody fleets, all of them older and less efficient.
The pandemic also provided unique business opportunities to add newer generation aircraft at attractive prices.
The next-generation A350s burn 21 percent less fuel per seat than the 777s they replace. Improved fuel efficiency is paramount to Delta’s ongoing efforts to reduce its carbon emissions and its Flight to Net Zero.
The acquisition of 29 narrowbody 737-900ERs also complement Delta’s existing fleet.
Delta will lease the A350s through AerCap and purchase 27 of the 737-900ERs from funds managed by Castlelake, L.P., while the remaining two 737-900ERs will be financed from funds also managed by Castlelake, L.P. Both transactions are subject to closing conditions.