- Stock Code:
- Date Founded:
- Dave Calhoun
- Headquarters Location:
- Chicago, USA
- Key Product Lines:
- Boeing 737, Boeing 747, Boeing 757, Boeing 767, Boeing 777, Boeing 787
- Business Type:
Last week, Brazil’s largest domestic airline, GOL Linhas Aéreas Inteligentes, got just a little bit bigger. The airline received its thirty-seventh Boeing B737 MAX, a continuation of its fleet renewal strategy.
The latest GOL Linhas Aéreas (GOL) aircraft departed the US on Wednesday from Seattle Boeing Field (BFI) at 14:33. The first leg of the Boeing B737 MAX 8’s ferry flight took 7:11 hours to cover the 3,600 miles (5,800 km) to the Dominican Republic, landing in Punta Cana International Airport (PUJ) at 00:44 on Thursday. After 52 minutes on the ground, it departed at 01:36 and landed in Brazil at Belo Horizonte’s Tancredo Neves International Airport (CNF) at 09:13.
China’s loss is Brazil’s gain
GOL will be the first operator of the aircraft, registration PS-GPH and MSN 44310, but it was initially destined for Urumqi Air, a Chinese low-cost airline owned by Hainan Airlines. Urumqi Air did not take it up, and with the current hiatus affecting Boeing deliveries to China, it has been delivered to GOL in Brazil. Planespotters.net lists the B737 MAX 8 as being 2.9 years old, so the upside is that another of Boeing’s long-parked 737 MAXs has found a new home and is soon to enter commercial service.
GOL is working through a fleet renewal program, bringing in MAXs to replace its existing Boeing B737NGs. According to ch-aviation.com, GOL has 21 B737-700s with an average age of 18.3 years and 87 B737-800s that, on average, are close to 12 years old. The airline is totally invested in the B737 MAX, with outstanding orders for 66 B737 MAX 8s and 25 B737 MAX 10s that will sit alongside the 37 MAX 8s now in the GOL fleet. In a recent investors update, GOL said it plans to end this year with a fleet of 44 737 MAX 8s and 92 737NGs and return 19 older aircraft.
Freighter conversions for 737-800s
The Boeing 737-800 dominates GOL’s present fleet, with some now destined for freighter conversion. Photo: Boeing
More fleet expansion is planned from GOL’s entry into the freighter business in partnership with the e-commerce platform Mercardo Livre. The agreement was announced in April, and GOL said it would convert up to 12 B737-800s into BCF (Boeing Converted Freighter) aircraft. The 737-800s will come from GOL’s fleet and, when fully converted, will have the capacity to carry up to 24 tons of cargo. The airline’s in-house MRO business, GOL Aerotech, will do the conversions in Confins, Brazil. The ch-aviation.com data shows that GOL has one B737-800(BCF) already in service.
In the second quarter of 2022, GOL carried 6.03 million passengers, had net revenues of BRL3.24 billion ($616 million) and earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) of BRL50.8 million ($9.66m). This was a vast improvement from the second quarter of 2021 when it carried 2.92 million passengers, had revenue of BRL1.03 billion ($196m) and a loss of BRL765 million ($145m). GOL’s per day aircraft utilization in 2Q 2022 was 10.2 hours compared to eight hours last year, and it recorded 45,538 departures this year, more than double the 19,662 in 2Q 2021.
How was your experience on one of GOL’s MAX 8s?