Aircraft model numbers/suffixes

Hi all,

Pardon my ignorance, I’m sure this is probably a silly question but I’ve not been able to find the answer I’m looking for.

When referring to a specific model/configuration of an aircraft, there are usually two numbers, like 747-400 or A340-600. But lately I’ve been seeing instances where the last two digits are numbers other than zero, for example, 747-469. And I’m just wondering… what does the “69” mean? Certain options were selected or not selected upon purchase of the plane? There are many other examples but this is one that I just ran across.

I thank you in advance for your assistance :)

Hey, that’s not a silly question at all! I was also confused at one point about what these numbers mean. But to answer your question:

Those numbers you are talking about refer to the customer code, in this case, the airline. Whenever an airline purchases or leases new aircraft, they are assigned a designation number for the variant of that model. So for a Boeing 777-300ER, it would go something like this:

United Airlines: B777-322ER
KLM: B777-306ER
Cathay Pacific: B777-367ER
(And so on…)

So for “69” it would mean that ̶m̶a̶n̶ ̶a̶n̶d̶ ̶w̶o̶m̶a̶n̶ ̶a̶r̶e̶ ̶a̶b̶o̶u̶t̶ ̶t̶o̶ it would be the customer code for Kuwait Airways.


Thank you very much! 😁

For Airbus, it’s based on engine.