American Airlines said Tuesday it is removing the Boeing 737 Max from its schedule for two more months and canceling nearly 20,000 flights through early June, an acknowledgment of the ongoing uncertainty over when the grounded plane will fly again.
American had 24 Max jets when the planes were grounded worldwide in March and expected to receive more of them throughout 2019 and 2020.
The airline has estimated that the grounding cost it $540 million in pretax income during 2019 — a figure that American could update when it reports fourth-quarter results next week. The Fort Worth-based carrier said last week it reached a settlement with Boeing over compensation for 2019 grounding-related damages, but didn’t disclose financial details.
American’s schedule for a June return of the Max puts it in line with United Airlines. Southwest Airlines, which has more Max jets than American or United, has removed the plane from its schedule through early April.
The Max was grounded worldwide after crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia killed 346 people. Boeing is still working on changes to the plane, and federal safety regulators say they have no timetable for letting the jet fly again.