The Air Current

One cabin door closes, another opens: It’s wholly unremarkable to see a Southwest Airlines 737 or an Emirates 777 land at Paine Field in Everett, Wash. Each Southwest delivery makes the airport its first stop after being delivered. New wi-fi-less 737s with unpainted winglets arrive from Boeing Field to be readied for service. For Emirates, each of the more than 150 777-300ERs it has taken from Boeing began its life at this airport.

On October 1, a brand new 737-800 for Southwest made the 21 minute hop north after delivery. It was the last of its kind and the last the airline had on order with Boeing. The airline has been taking delivery of Next Generation 737s since December 17, 1997. It was flying 258 737 Classics that day in 1997 when it added its first 737-700 and the carrier has taken 562 737NGs directly from Boeing since, according to the plane maker, more than any other on its way to becoming the U.S.’s largest domestic airline.

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Jon Ostrower is Editor-in-chief of The Air Current. Prior to launching TAC in June 2018, Ostrower served as Aviation Editor for CNN Worldwide, guiding the network's global coverage of the business and operations of flying. Ostrower joined CNN in 2016 following four and half years at the Wall Street Journal. Based first in Chicago and then in Washington, D.C. he covered Boeing, aviation safety and the business of global aerospace. Before that, Ostrower was editor of the award-winning FlightBlogger for Flightglobal and Flight International Magazine covering the development of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner and other new aircraft programs from 2007 to 2012. Ostrower, a Boston native, graduated from The George Washington University's School of Media and Public Affairs with a bachelor's degree in Political Communication. He is based in Seattle.

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