Southwest Airlines (WN, Dallas Love Field) does not expect to deploy the B737-7 into commercial service this year as it sees continued uncertainty surrounding both its type certification as well as delivery dates.

“Our 2024 capacity plans do not currently include any MAX 7 flying. So, [if] a certification of that aircraft continues to push out, our 2024 capacity plans will not be impacted,” Tammy Romo, Southwest’s Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer, said during a 2023 fourth quarter investor's call.

Southwest’s contractual order book includes 307 firm orders for the B737-7, with deliveries set to take place between 2024 and 2031, although the company offers “no assurances that current estimations and timelines are correct.” Southwest also has 188 firm orders for the B737-8 and 199 options for either types, for a total order book of 694 aircraft.

The US budget carrier is by far the largest future operator of the MAX 7 which it will use to replace its fleet of B737-700s. Only four other airlines have confirmed commitments for a total of 32 units, while a further 30 have been ordered by disclosed customers. The larger -8s are replacing Southwest's B737-800s.

The ch-aviation fleets data module shows Southwest has a fleet of 818 aircraft, composed of 388 B737-700s, 223 B737-8s, and 207 B737-800s.

In 2024, Southwest plans to take deliveries of about 79 MAX (down from a previous estimate of 85), although numbers may change due to Boeing’s continued supply chain issues and the MAX 7's certification. Additionally, the company expects to retire approximately 49 aircraft, including forty-five B737-700s, and four B737-800s, ending the year with 847 jets in its fleet.