Southwest Airlines Fleet: An Overview of the World’s Largest Operator of Boeing 737s

Southern West Airlines is one of the largest airlines in the world, and is known for its affordable fares, extensive network, and unique corporate culture. One of the key factors that has contributed to the airline’s success is its fleet of aircraft, which is made up entirely of Boeing 737s. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at Southwest Airlines’ fleet, including its history, current status, and future plans.

History of Southwest Airlines Fleet

Southwest Airlines was founded in 1967, and initially operated a fleet of three Boeing 737-200 aircraft. Over the years, the airline gradually expanded its fleet, adding newer and more advanced versions of the 737, including the 737-300, 737-500, 737-700, and 737-800. Today, Southwest Airlines has the largest fleet of Boeing 737s in the world, with over 700 aircraft in service.

Current Fleet of Southwest Airlines

As of 2021, Southwest Airlines operates the following types of Boeing 737 aircraft:

737-700: This is the backbone of Southwest Airlines’ fleet, with over 400 aircraft in service. The 737-700 has a range of up to 3,000 miles and can carry up to 143 passengers.

737-800: Southwest Airlines currently operates around 200 of these aircraft. The 737-800 has a longer range than the 737-700, with a maximum range of 3,500 miles, and can carry up to 175 passengers.

737 MAX 8: Southwest Airlines has ordered 280 of these aircraft, and currently operates around 20 of them. The 737 MAX 8 is the latest version of the 737, and features more advanced technology, improved fuel efficiency, and greater range than previous models.

Southwest Airlines has also announced plans to add the 737 MAX 7 and 737 MAX 200 to its fleet in the coming years, which will allow the airline to serve even more destinations with greater efficiency.

Unique Features of Southwest Airlines Fleet

One of the most notable features of Southwest Airlines’ fleet is its consistency. By operating a single type of aircraft, the airline is able to simplify its operations and maintenance, reduce costs, and ensure greater reliability. Additionally, the airline has a unique seating configuration that features only economy-class seats, but offers more legroom than most other airlines.

Southwest Airlines also has a distinctive livery for its aircraft, featuring a bright red, orange, and yellow color scheme with a heart logo on the tail. This branding is instantly recognizable and helps to reinforce the airline’s fun, friendly, and approachable image. If you are thinking about southwest airlines check-in then first you should get information for the fleet also. 

Future Plans for Southwest Airlines Fleet

Southwest Airlines has a number of plans for its fleet in the coming years. In addition to adding more 737 MAX aircraft, the airline is also planning to retire its older 737-700s and replace them with newer, more efficient models. The airline is also exploring the possibility of adding larger aircraft to its fleet, such as the Boeing 787, in order to serve longer-haul routes.


Southwest Airlines’ fleet of Boeing 737s has played a major role in the airline’s success over the years. By operating a single type of aircraft, the airline has been able to streamline its operations and reduce costs, while maintaining a high level of reliability and consistency. With plans to add more advanced 737 MAX aircraft to its fleet, as well as explore the possibility of larger aircraft, Southwest Airlines is poised to continue its growth and success in the years to come.

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