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United announces purchase of 100 Boeing Dreamliners

A United Airlines plane taxis at A United Airlines plane taxis at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport on November 5, 2014. The carrier said it has ordered 100 Dreamliners. File Photo by Brian Kersey/UPI
A United Airlines plane taxis at A United Airlines plane taxis at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport on November 5, 2014. The carrier said it has ordered 100 Dreamliners. File Photo by Brian Kersey/UPI | License Photo

Dec. 13 (UPI) -- United Airlines announced on Tuesday it is ordering 100 Boeing 787 Dreamliners from the airplane maker with an option to order 100 more, showing one of the biggest financial commitments to the industry since the COVID-19 pandemic.

The carrier said the purchase is the largest investment into a widebody plane in U.S. aviation history as United bets on the continued rebound of airline travel since the start of the pandemic in 2020.

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United said in a statement that it expects to see the delivery of the widebody planes from 2024 to 2032 and will mix and match between the 787-8, 9 and 10 models. It said that will allow the company some flexibility depending on routes.

The carrier said it has also exercised its option to buy 44 Boeing 737 MAX airplanes that will be delivered between 2024 and 2026.

"United emerged from the pandemic as the world's leading global airline and the flag carrier of the United States," said United CEO Scott Kirby in a statement. "This order further solidifies our lead and creates new opportunities for our customers, employees and shareholders by accelerating our plan to connect more people to more places around the globe and deliver the best experience in the sky."

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The companies didn't disclose the cost of the transaction in their statements.

"With this investment in its future fleet, the 737 MAX and 787 will help United accelerate its fleet modernization and global growth strategy," said Stan Deal, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes said in its statement.

"The Boeing team is honored by United's trust in our family of airplanes to connect people and transport cargo around the world for decades to come."

Boeing said the 787 can give carriers 25% in fuel use compared with the airplanes it replaces, depending on the configuration.

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