With President Trump issuing an emergency order immediately grounding the Boeing 737 Max fleet in the United States in the wake of two fatal crashes, travelers on Southwest, American and United are going to be impacted.
Southwest Airlines, which has more Max planes (34) than any U.S. carrier, has issued a travel advisory allowing travelers to change their flights without penalty, with certain restrictions. The airline used the plane on about 160 of its 4,000 daily flights.
"Our goal is to operate our schedule with every available aircraft in our fleet to meet our customers' expectations during the busy spring travel season," Southwest said in a statement.
A Southwest flight from Oakland to Newark landed at 7:10 p.m. EDT, the final Max flight by a U.S. carrier until the grounding is lifted. American and United's last Max flights landed earlier Wednesday.
American Airlines said it is working to rebook customers as quickly as possible.
United said it expects minimal impact to its operation by using spare planes and rebooking affected travelers on other flights.
United’s statement on the FAA grounding pic.twitter.com/CfMNC7AkI4— United Airlines (@united) March 13, 2019
Here are 6 things travelers need to know
1. The grounding is effective immediately.
2. No one knows how long the planes will be out of service. The last fleet grounding, of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner in 2013, lasted more than three months.
3. A small percentage of flights will be affected. Just 4 percent of Southwest's daily flights are Max 8; American has 90 Max 8 flights a day out of 6,700 flights, and United has 40 daily flights on the bigger Max 9, out of 4,700 daily flights.
4. Southwest's Max 8 flights are spread throughout the country. American's Max 8 flights are concentrated into and out of Miami. United has a heavy concentration of Max 9 flights in Houston and Los Angeles.
A week of Boeing 737 Max routes by carrier
5. If your flight is affected, the airline likely will automatically rebook you on another flight at no cost. After the FAA ordered airlines to ground their Boeing 787s in 2013, United immediately shifted passengers scheduled on its six 787s to other flights. Southwest recommends travelers go to southwest.com to rebook, cancel or check flight status because its call centers are jammed.
6. If your flight is canceled, you are eligible for a refund.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Boeing 737 Max grounded at Southwest, American and United: 6 things travelers need to know