Boeing Co or Airbus may win an order this month worth as much as $3.95 billion from United Arab Emirates-based Air Arabia, which said on Sunday it plans to buy as many as 50 planes.
The Middle East's largest low-cost carrier had previously said it was looking to purchase 34 either Boeing 737 aircraft or A320s from Airbus, a unit of EADS.
A Boeing 737-800 costs as much as $79 million at list prices, valuing a 50-plane order at $3.95 billion. An order for 50 A320s would be worth about $3.25 billion.
We are planning to purchase between 34 and 50 aircraft directly from airplane makers...in November, Air Arabia Chief Executive Officer Adel Ali told Reuters by telephone from Kuwait.
He did not say why he might order more aircraft than previously stated.
The three-year old carrier, set up by Sharjah, the UAE's third-largest emirate, operates a fleet of nine leased Airbus A320s.
Regional airlines, such as Dubai-based Emirates and Qatar Airways, have in the past announced billion dollar plane orders at the Dubai Airshow, which starts on November 11
Air Arabia sold a 55 percent stake in the Middle East's first airline IPO in April. The $700 million it raised in the share sale will go towards helping paying for the aircraft, Air Arabia spokesman Housam Raydan said in June.
The carrier plans to expand its fleet to 52 by 2016, Raydan said.