Amazon expands Amazon Air delivery capacity

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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Amazon is adding 11 new aircraft to its Amazon Air fleet.

The e-tail giant is making its first-ever purchase of 11 Boeing 767-300 aircraft, expanding its air delivery capacity as it has been offering Amazon Prime delivery of some items in as little as five hours in select cities. Amazon Air plays a central role in delivering for customers by transporting items across longer distances in shorter timeframes.

“Our goal is to continue delivering for customers across the U.S. in the way that they expect from Amazon, and purchasing our own aircraft is a natural next step toward that goal,” said Sarah Rhoads, VP of Amazon Global Air. “Having a mix of both leased and owned aircraft in our growing fleet allows us to better manage our operations, which in turn helps us to keep pace in meeting our customer promises.”

The acquisitions include seven aircraft from Delta and four aircraft from WestJet. The four aircraft purchased from WestJet in March are currently undergoing passenger to cargo conversion and will join Amazon Air’s network in 2021, while the seven aircraft from Delta will enter Amazon’s air cargo network in 2022. The company will continue to rely on third-party carriers to operate these new aircraft.

Amazon Air continues to expand globally. In 2020, Amazon launched its first-ever air hub at Leipzig/Halle Airport in Germany and new regional air operations at Lakeland Linder International Airport, John F. Kennedy International Airport, San Francisco International Airport, Chicago O’Hare International Airport, Richmond International Airport, Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport, Kahului Airport, Kona International Airport, Los Angeles International Airport, and Louis Armstrong International Airport. 

During summer 2020, Amazon Air announced the purchase of six million gallons of sustainable aviation fuel and has already invested in electric ground service equipment and solar rooftop panels planned at some facilities.