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Ryanair's Plan with its 737-700

Tue Aug 30, 2016 7:17 pm


I was recently flying with Ryanair's only 737-700 (EI-SEV). It made me wonder why Ryanair actually has this plane. While they offer it for Corporate Jet hires, it doesn't feel to me that this was their original plan or is actually a business that fits in their business model.
On Wikipedia it says they use it as backup plane and for pilot training. Wouldn't another 737-800 have been more practical esp. for backup uses? Were they offered the plane for a price they couldn't refuse? It just seems to me a big burden to accommodate a single different model for those three reasons where another 737-800 would have done the job as well. Or do they use the plane to ensure that their systems can cope with a different plane (e.g. when the MAX 200 arrive)?
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Re: Ryanair's Plan with its 737-700

Tue Aug 30, 2016 7:35 pm

A 737-700 is a lot cheaper to purchase than an -800. Im pretty sure they got it dirt cheap as I recall its one of the earliest 737NGs out there. I know southwest seem to collect -700s but other than that I don't know many operators who are really wanting to buy them. Also, FR are probably gonna make a few thousand poor souls pay them to come work for them in the next few years so I'm pretty sure that -700 they bought will stay busy and log quite a few thousand landings in the years to come.
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Re: Ryanair's Plan with its 737-700

Tue Aug 30, 2016 7:43 pm

I was on a job at PIK a couple of months ago and the 737-700 was in doing T&G's at the time. I got talking to a guy on the ramp as we watched it come and go, who told me Ryanair got it dirt cheap and that they had to do a lot of ground time on it, as it had lost it's air worthiness certificate. To me I suppose they bought a cheap second hand car and spent some time in the body shop restoring it. It's a bit of an oddity, they've certainly used it for crew training, offer it as an ultra low density corporate jet, and it's currently fully passenger configured in regular service. My feeling is it will become a spare parts donor sooner rather than later...
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Re: Ryanair's Plan with its 737-700

Tue Aug 30, 2016 8:10 pm

The aircraft was purchased primarily as a training aircraft. Due to the nature of the mission, it naturally gets subjected to a lot of landings (by my guess, probably 30 per training flight), a fair number of very hard ones too, over it's career. This somewhat limits the lifetime of the aircraft, something that would also be the case if they used a brand new 737-800 directly from Boeing. In this case, buying and throwing away a cheap, old -700 makes sense. Especially if said airframe has a lot of hours, but not so many cycles.

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