A Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental on the factory floor in Everett.

A Boeing 747-8 Intercontinental on the factory floor in Everett.

I love a good mystery. Today Boeing sent out a media advisory saying that tomorrow there will be an event in New York City to, “announce a significant airplane purchase agreement.” Now, what could this be?

The release does not say much, but gives away two interesting details. First, it will be held at a very nice hotel. I don’t want to name the exact hotel, but if I were to try and get a room there tomorrow, the cheapest is over $600.00 and the Penthouse is about $10,000. Not your Motel 6.

Also Ray Conner, President and CEO, Boeing Commercial Airplanes will be at the announcement as well. He doesn’t really show up to many order announcements, so this is something special.

So who will be the airline and what aircraft will they be ordering? Some of my thoughts:

  • The venue is nice. I think this eliminates most low cost carriers, at least those in the US. Actually, I would be surprised if this was a US carrier at all. The only US carrier, who would be making a Boeing purchase and announcing in NYC I could see is Delta. But my bet is a foreign carrier.
  • My guess is the order will be significant. Either with the number of planes or aircraft type. There have been some pretty large numbers of 737 orders already and it would probably need to be significant for this sort of announcement.
  • Honestly, I hope that it is an order for the 747-8 Intercontinental — especially from a US carrier. There haven’t been very many and additional orders would call for celebration.
  • I wouldn’t see this being an order for the 787 Dreamliner. It is still a sore topic and not currently flying.
  • I think the Boeing 737 MAX is a great airplane, but no offense, the order announcements are not as exciting anymore. I am kind of hoping for a different aircraft type.
  • A MAX order from JetBlue (who is based in NYC) would excite me, but I do not see that happening.
  • Could this be a combo? Boeing could officially announce the 777X and the first airline to order it? It seems a bit early, but it would take some attention away from the 787 and help to move Boeing forward.

Stay tuned. @AirlineFlyer will be reporting for @AirlineReporter in New York City tomorrow and follow both Twitter accounts for the announcement. The event is set to start at 10:15am EST.  Until then…

WHAT DO YOU THINK? Who do you think the airline will be? What aircraft will they order? Leave your thoughts in the comments.

Update: Reuters is reporting that they are hearing Ryanair will announce an order for 150 Boeing 737 NG’s tomorrow. Sure, great for Boeing to keep their 737NG (which is still a great plane) line going. Also would be good for Ryanair to finally be able to add more aircraft and routes, but I hope that this is not the announcement. Just not very exciting or sexy — give me some wide bodies here.

Also, the location of a posh hotel does not make sense for Ryanair, since they want to be seen as an ultra low-cost carrier. The biggest question for me is: Why New York City? Now, if they are announcing the 737 order and plans to fly to NYC, then I am interested for sure.

I am going to say that I do not think Ryanair will be involved with tomorrow’s announcement.

Update2: And I was wrong (hey it happens). A bit after 2am PST, Boeing sent out a press release giving a large preview of their announcement.

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF & FOUNDER - SEATTLE, WA. David has written, consulted, and presented on multiple topics relating to airlines and travel since 2008. He has been quoted and written for a number of news organizations, including BBC, CNN, NBC News, Bloomberg, and others. He is passionate about sharing the complexities, the benefits, and the fun stuff of the airline business. Email me: david@airlinereporter.com

UPDATED: Boeing Announces Large 737 Order for Ryanair

Wasn’t it rumored that Ryanair was ordering 200 737’s or something? Not that this is their announcement.

Ryanair has said they want to order more aircraft, but neither Airbus or Boeing would give them a good enough deal.

I figure there is probably a big announcement coming from them at some point in the future (from either Boeing or Airbus), but the venue of a high-end hotel doesn’t make sense to me. They want to be seen as ULTRA cheap.


Calvin Serrano

I have a huge feeling this is the end of Philippine Airline’s 100 aircraft order. New York is a focus city for Philippine Airlines in the coming months, and they wanted Boeing aircraft to compliment their 63 aircraft orders with Airbus. If it is Philippine Airlines, I wouldn’t be surprised.

I also would like to see an order from either Cathay, or Emirates considering the 777-X coming out. But since not a lot of airline companies that hub to New York are Boeing fliers, then I wouldn’t expect an United States Airline order.

American placed their orders already. United and Delta need to renew their fleet (especially Delta with the Mad Dogs). Both battle for New York. So I would actually go with Delta.

I am very skeptical about US carriers flying any jumbos any time in the future. Isn’t United phasing out their 74s? Expectations of US flying public is best depicted with all the 757 flights across the pond – to hell with comfort as long as we have the schedule flexibility. Jumbo jets don’t fit anywhere in that strategy.

Delta already has 100 orders for 100 737-900ERs, 88 717s from AirTran, and 787s eventually. I don’t expect to see them tomorrow.

Delta is not getting rid of the MD-88/90/717s. In fact the rumor patrol says that Delta is going to be updating the cockpits on the 88s and 90s so that a same type rating can be issued. If this is the case, those planes will be around for at least 10 more years.

Delta is updating the cockpits on the 88’s, but it is already a common type rating with the 90 and pilots currently fly both.

Tim de Raadt

As others have stated, CNBC is speculating that it is indeed Ryan Air.

Frank Lococo

My money is on Ryanair announcing their long anticipated order. I don’t know that the Boeing Board has given the go-ahead for the 777-X. I would be surprised to see a single 787 order until it’s flying again.

Ben Granucci

The Boeing board hadn’t given the go-ahead to the 737 Max when the AA order was announced. Granted, that was about retaining a major customer that was about to place a huge order with Airbus, but I don’t think board approval is a prerequisite for announcing a order for a new type. In fact, I think it would help to convince the board that the 777-X is a worthwhile investment. I think that the 777-X is very much still in play here.

The Ryanair order already has been widely announced last week in numerous media sources both in Seattle and nation wide. This would be a bit anti climatic.

Which makes me think it is not Ryanair.


It doesn’t make sense that it would be Ryan Air as that is old news.

I would hope that at the last minute somehow Boeing was able to salvage the Lion Air order which supposedly just went to Airbus.

That would be news or it could be that Lion Air will take the 787 as they were thinking. We will know what is about 12 hours.

Could be, but then again, it makes me wonder “why NYC?”


Louie Centina

This could be a not ordinary announcement from Boeing Co. as they set a venue in New York for such event. After three consecutive defeats in just a month from Airbus for the following massive orders of Airbuses A320 NEO’s from Lufthansa, Turkish Airlines & Lion Air (which is using an all exclusive Boeing 737’s), It is time for Boeing’s table to reveal what big surprises they may have. I assume that one of this could be a surprise order from EASY JET which their CEO wants to shift from Airbus to Boeing. Also, to lunch officially the Boeing 777X with a couple of launch cutomers (could be Emirates as a potential launch customer and maybe a surprise customer Luftahnsa as they just odered Boeing 777-300ER for its subsidiary Swiss International Airlines). Whatever it may be, go Boeing!!!!

EasyJet moving to the 737 would be pretty big, but I wouldn’t see the announcement made in NYC.

I am hoping it is the 777X

My long shot guess is as good as yours. Jason and I were tossing ideas around the Routehappy office this afternoon, and my small bet is on an Etihad order for the 747-8i.

EY is in a real crunch for capacity (they’re still flying the 345 on regular flights, not SQ-style all-J), the 748 is the only large airliner with delivery dates in the next three years (as that recent Swiss 77W order showed) and the NYC order could provide them with a big We Are Not Emirates publicity boost in the US market. I can see an “Emirates A380, Etihad 747-8” split, despite EY also ordering 380s.

I would LOVE it to be EY 7478I. Of course anything with the 7478I would be quite exciting.


My money’s on the Ryan Air announcement, though I’m guessing there’s more to it than just that deal, even though the Ryan Air deal is touted to be a huge order. I’ve no idea what it will be, though if I had my pick, I love to hear them saying 777X officially announced. That would be awesome!

After poking around on Aviation Week’s website, there is a lot of word traffic centered on the 777x, so that’s where my bet lies. Interestingly enough they are discussing the possibility of Lufthansa being a launch customer.

I like the idea of Lufthansa. They have the A340 and A330, no A350’s on order. It could make sense.


My $’s are on an Emirates 777x announcement. Would be sweet if it was a BA or VA 747-8 announcement.

Wouldn’t it be something if it was all the above? 🙂

I doubt airlines would go for that though.


I like the 747-8, always stay optimistic!

Now that GE has been announced as the exclusive engine source for the 777X, I’ll say we’re going to see a significant order – like US$10 billion plus – announcement from Emirates Airline for the Boeing 777-9X.

Ben Granucci

Hasn’t Emirates said that they are most interested in the -8X which would be closest in size to the -300?

Ryanair to order 1x 748i that will fit the entire population of Ireland on board. €1 tickets to Dubai, €10,000 per carryon bag.

I think it is Ryanair. Reason it’s being made in a big fancy hotel is that it’s being made with the Irish government as part of an agreement with USA. That’s my thought anyway.

Ryanair long/medium haul aircraft capable of serving the u.s and beyond maybe ???

I have a feeling it is a Cathay pacific order that will include 747-8i aircrafts. Several hints have been dropped for some time now

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