Two major U.S. carriers, the biggest LCC and biggest major carrier, also plan to hold steady.
Justin Jones, Southwest Airlines’ vice president of planning and performance for Technical Operations, says the carrier does not plan to change its mix of inhouse versus outsourced maintenance work, in response to the pandemic. His focus is on replacing Boeing 737NGs with 737MAXs, of which the carrier has just ordered 100 more, plus 155 options, and may operate 600 by 2031.
American Airlines has traditionally outsourced the smallest share of maintenance in the U.S., and its latest mechanics contract protects workers against much change. “We haven’t fundamentally changed our insource versus outsource strategy as a result of the pandemic,” a spokesperson says. “We don’t have any updates on our maintenance strategy to share at this time.”