South Korea’s largest low cost carrier Jeju Air has ordered 40 new Boeing 737 Max 8 jets valued at around USD $4.4 Billion.
The news comes after initial reports from Reuters that Jeju Air was in talks with Boeing and Airbus for new jets to expand its growing regional route network.
"With Korea's growing commercial aviation market, we are excited to take the next step in expanding our business with the 737 MAX, a world-class airplane that will allow us to improve our operation and continue to provide a safe and enjoyable experience for our passengers," said Seok-Joo Lee, President and CEO of Jeju Air. "The 737 MAX 8 and its superior performance and economics make it an ideal airplane to implement our growth strategy as we look to expand beyond Asia in the coming years."
Along with the 40 placed on order, the airline will have the option to buy an additional 10 jets, which it expects to see delivered from 2022 to 2026. With the additional jets, the deal could be worth up to USD $5.9 Billion.
"We are extremely proud that Jeju Air has become a leader in the vibrant LCC market by flying the Boeing 737. And we are delighted that the airline has chosen to build their future fleet with this major order for the 737 MAX," said Ihssane Mounir, senior vice president of Commercial Sales & Marketing for The Boeing Company.
Started in 2005, Jeju Air is the first and largest low cost carrier of South Korea. It currently operates a fleet of 39 Boeing 737-800 aircraft to 40 destinations in China, Japan, Hong Kong, Guam, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam. The airline operates the flights from its hubs in Jeju, Seoul-Incheon, and Seoul-Gimpo.