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The future 737 MAX (image: Ryanair)

Ryanair rejects long haul despite buying long range

It says its new Boeing 737 MAX is a “game-changer”, but “we don’t have plans to go long haul,” claims its marketing chief.

As it prepares to take delivery of 135 new extended-range Boeing aircraft, Ryanair has ruled out any plans to enter the increasingly hotly contested low-cost transatlantic market, the Irish Independent reports.

It has hailed its new Boeing 737 MAX as a “game-changer” due to its potential for longer flights, better fuel economy and additional seating capacity.

Deliveries of the 135 aircraft, at an estimated cost of €110 million each, are due to start early next year, after it placed an order for them in 2014.

It is one of the world’s biggest operators of the Boeing 737, with almost 450 in its fleet, while rivals like easyJet and Wizz Air have focused on building Airbus fleets.

Shorter extensions
But Ryanair’s marketing director, Kenny Jacobs, has ruled out the high-tech version of the aircraft type being used as part of a long-rumoured entry into the transatlantic market.

“We don’t have any plans to go long haul,” he said.

“Yes, the Max aircraft are larger – we will have 197 seats on them as opposed to 189 on the current fleet. You can optimise the flying from places like Edinburgh and Glasgow to Lanzarote.”

The airline’s strategy will also be on extending its operations into northern Africa, the Middle East and Eastern Europe, he added.

“If you look at the network we now have, we are flying to Jordan, Israel, north Africa and the Ukraine. So the network is expanding a bit, but we don’t have any plans to do long-haul flying.”

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