The on-going global financial crisis has had a sweeping impact throughout the world, and few industries have been harder his than aviation. There was a marked drop in demand for air travel last year, forcing many airlines to reevaluate their short to mid-term fleet requirements.
According to Zagat’s 2009 Airline Survey, one-third of the frequent travelers surveyed reported traveling less last year, with only 7% traveling more.
Despite the challenging market, however, US plane maker Boeing managed to meet its 2009 target, delivering 481 craft. It has a backlog of 3,375 planes and received 263 gross and 142 net commercial orders in the year.
The Next-Generation 737 continued to be the most popular model, with 372 deliveries registered. The highly anticipated 787 Dreamliner took its first flight in mid-December. The first delivery is expected to take place in the fourth quarter of this year.
“2009 was not without its challenges but it also was a year of exciting achievements for our company and our industry,” says Jim Albaugh, Boeing Commercial Airplanes president and CEO. “With signs of economic recovery emerging in 2010, we look forward to better days ahead.”
Pictured: Lion Air of Indonesia takes delivery of Boeing craft
Photo Courtesy of Boeing