Wary Flyers Are Paying Extra to Avoid Boeing’s 737 Max Planes: Reports

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  • Wary passengers appear to be changing their bookings to avoid Boeing’s 737 Max planes.
  • It comes after a crisis aboard Alaska Airlines Flight 1282 when a door blew off the plane.
  • Kayak said use of its 737 Max search filter increased threefold in the days after the incident. 

Anxious flyers appear to be actively avoiding boarding Boeing’s 737 Max planes, even if that means paying extra for a different fight.

TikTok influencer @culturework posted a video on January 6 explaining why she avoids Boeing Max planes, as noted by SFGate.

“My travel planning includes booking more expensive flights, more inconvenient flights, flights with only middle seats,” she said, in one video.

“If I’m flying, I want to be flying. I don’t want to be decompression eventing, I don’t want to be uncontrolled nose-diving, I don’t want to be stalling, babe.”

One of her followers commented: ” I have paid over $1k for the same flight to avoid a 737 Max.” Culturework responded: “Yep. I paid $300 more, had a CLT layover I had to sprint to make to avoid. Could’ve flown via MIA and got in 3 hours early on a Max.”

Jay Franzone, an Alaska Airlines flier told The Washington Post that he avoids Boeing Max 9s “especially since I’m traveling a long distance over water.”

“Boeing clearly hasn’t put safety first,” he said. “It’s more of an apprehension and less of an outright fear though, I would say.”

Boeing did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.

It comes after an Alaska Airlines Flight 1282 lost a door plug during a flight earlier this month.

Last Friday, the Max 9 returned to service after all of the planes were grounded by the Federal Aviation Administration for emergency safety checks.

It’s not the first time Boeing’s 737 Max fleet has had issues. In 2019, two Boeing 737 Max planes crashed, killing nearly 350 people.

Travel booking site Kayak told the Washington Post that usage of its 737 Max search filter increased threefold in the days after the incident.

Alaska Airlines and United Airlines, the two airlines that use the Max 9, are offering passengers the chance to cancel or book onto different flights at no extra cost.

Passengers can check the model of the plane they’re booking onto by clicking the “details” button on the booking pages for the airlines, and the information is also available for those who’ve already booked a ticket on the flight information page.

United Airlines in a legal filing last week said it expected to lose money as a result of the January 5 incident.

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