While there are no announcements yet by Airbus or Boeing, the German giant Lufthansa has provided a detailed statement concering its order for 25 Airbus A350-900s, for delivery from 2016, and 34 Boeing 777-9s starting in 2020.
The statement’s references to simplifying its fleet across Lufthansa and the group’s other carriers Swiss and Austrian imply further orders, and some early media reports say 14 of the 777-Xs may have the status of options rather than firm orders.
It seems unlikely from the perspective of 2013 that Lufthansa or its satellite airlines will again fly to Australia but the significance of its split order and its long term committment to advanced technology jets will prove to be influential choices.
The emphasis on A350s and next generation 777s, as well as A380s and 747-8Is, as well as the retention of some older technology 744s and A340s until 2025 means that Lufthansa isn’t fully moved by the trend to shorter term fleet ownership deals.
Instead it seem to be more like Delta in that respect, holding onto outright purchases for longer and working those jets harder rather than churning its jets to keep the fleet age average low to avoid the rising maintenance costs of aging airliners.