Parcel and logistics giant UPS Inc. has ordered eight new 767 Freighter planes from Boeing, increasing its fleet of that cargo jet design to 108 airplanes, the airplane builder said Monday.
The deal comes as global air cargo revenue for 2021 has more than doubled from its level in pre-pandemic 2019 in response to demand from far-flung supply chains and expanding e-commerce, Boeing said.
According to Boeing's 2022 Commercial Market Outlook forecast, carriers will require 2,795 more dedicated freighters over the next 20 years, including 940 new widebodies, 555 widebody converted freighters, and 1,300 standard body conversions. The global freighter fleet will grow to 3,610 airplanes by 2041, up from 2,250 today.
Terms of the purchase were not released, but UPS said it would begin taking delivery of these new airplanes in 2025, with an additional 767-300 Boeing Converted Freighter (BCF) entering service in late 2023. This purchase builds on UPS's order in 2021 for 19 of the 767 Freighter models.
The 767 Freight airplane is based on the 767-300ER (Extended Range) passenger jet, fitted to carry up to 52.4 tons of revenue cargo with intercontinental range, serving as a platform for long-haul, regional, and feeder markets. UPS was the launch customer for the original 767 Freighter in 1995.
UPS’ order was also historically significant because it came exactly 50 years after Boeing first started building freighter planes. The manufacturer delivered the first widebody freighter, a 747-200, to Lufthansa in 1972. According to Boeing, that design featured a hinged nose door that could load huge objects, allowing shippers and freight forwarders to deliver more goods faster than shipping by sea or truck.