Alaska Airlines has announced today that they will retire their fleet of 5 737-400 ‘Combi’ aircraft. The Alaska Dispatch News reports that the retirement of these aircraft is part of a broader initiative to replace all 26 737-400s in the Alaska Fleet by the end of 2016. The 5 737-400s will be replaced by 3 737-700s ‘Next Gen’ airplanes. The 3 -700 aircraft, which are already operated by Alaska, will be converted to ‘Combi’ aircraft.
The 737-400 ‘Combi’ aircraft is a unique airplane. The cabin is divided between a passenger section in the back seating 72 passengers and cargo pallet positions in the front of the jet. The airplane is used on thin Alaska routes that rely on air cargo flights to supply remote towns.
With Alaska’s retirement of the -400 “Classics” in 2016, Southwest Airlines will be the only remaining major US airline that will be operating the “Classic” fleet. Southwest flies a fleet of -300 and -500 aircraft.
Check out the video of a 737-400 ‘Combi’ landing in Anchorage.