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Airlines are constantly adjusting their schedules, launching new services while cancelling others. It’s all part of their efforts perfect their networks while increasing profitability. New routes are announced nearly every day, some seasonal and some more permanent. Here’s a look at some interesting flight changes that were announced in July.
It was a big month for some of the largest airlines in the US. With winter schedules being posted, the approval of new international partnerships, and changes due to the Boeing 737 MAX groundings, there was plenty to watch with the country’s biggest carriers alone.
It was a big month for American Airlines. The carrier suspended its service between Oakland, California (OAK), and Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) due to the extended 737 MAX groundings. This is the first suspension the carrier has blamed on lack of equipment following the FAA ban on 737 MAX flights.
Elsewhere, American has added a slew of new routes. It added seven seasonal routes from its hub in Phoenix (PHX) this winter. American first announced service from PHX to Cedar Rapids (CID), Iowa; New Orleans (MSY) and Wichita (ICT), Kansas. Later, it detailed flights to Colorado Springs (COS); Fargo, North Dakota (FAR); Fort Lauderdale (FLL); and Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky (CVG), all seven of which begin Dec. 18.
Abroad, American announced this month that it will stop servicing Bolivia and expand in Australia following its recently approved partnership with Qantas. The carrier also said it’s seeking permission for three weekly flights to Ecuador, flying from DFW to Quito (UIO) and Guayaquil (GYE).
The carrier also announced a series of point-to-point flights this fall, increasing capacity for traveling college football fans in the weekends surrounding big games.
Delta Air Lines
Delta Air Lines is adding a route from New York JFK to Houston Bush using new Airbus 220 aircraft. The new twice-daily offering puts Delta in direct competition with JetBlue, which operates service along the same route.
United will resume nonstop flights between the US and India in September. Taking off from Newark Liberty (EWR) in the New York Area, United will operate flights to New Delhi (DEL) and Mumbai (BOM). Service resumes Sept. 6 after being grounded for the past few months due to the closure of Pakistani airspace to overflights, a decision which has since been reversed.
United has also announced a new flight to DEL from San Francisco (SFO), which will launch Dec. 5.
Speaking of JetBlue, the New York-based operator announced a few of its own schedule changes this month. The airline announced that it is shrinking its presence in DC, cancelling nonstop routes to Charleston (CHS), South Carolina, and Jacksonville (JAX), Florida, from Washington Reagan National (DCA). Service between these cities and the nation’s capital will end Oct. 26.
JetBlue will drop its service from JFK to Charlotte, North Carolina (CLT), on the same day, but will increase CLT service from its hub in Boston (BOS).
The carrier previously announced that it would increase service from BOS to DCA, but the change comes at the expense of non-stop routes to Hartford, Connecticut (BDL), and Tampa (TPA) from Washington.
Further south, JetBlue scheduled flights to its newest Caribbean destination, the island of Guadeloupe. Once these flights take off in February, JetBlue claims it will “be the only airline to operate flights between the northeastern U.S. and Guadeloupe.”
Additional JetBlue flights to San Jose (SJO) in Costa Rica are also scheduled to begin in November.
Southwest will expand its popular Hawaii service to two more West-Coast cities, offering flights to the islands from Sacramento and San Diego. In the same announcement, Southwest revealed plans to bring service to both Lihue, on Kauai, and Hilo, on the Island of Hawaii.
The carrier is also looking to add service to Cozumel (CZM), Mexico. The airline hopes these flights will begin in the first quarter of 2020, pending regulatory approval.
Following its exit from EWR this fall, Southwest is betting on New York La Guardia (LGA). Southwest CEO Gary Kelly revealed plans to service the airport with its larger Boeing 737-800 and, once the groundings end, 737 MAX 8 aircraft to increase capacity at LGA.
Since the 737 MAX groundings began in March, Southwest Airlines has suspended 13 of its routes, the airline confirmed to TPG this month.
Ultra Low Cost Carriers
ULCCs are notorious for adding and dropping flights quickly, and testing out new routes to maximize profitability, making their schedules particularly difficult to track.
This month, Allegiant added three new cities and ten routes to its schedule. Redmond (RDM), Oregon; State College (SCE), Pennsylvania; and Traverse City (TVC), Michigan, will join the airline’s map in October.
In addition, Allegiant also added new flights at Jacksonville; Grand Rapids, Michigan (GRR); McAllen, Texas (MFE) and New Orleans (MSY).
Frontier plans new seasonal services to Miami (MIA) this winter from Boston, Detroit (DTW), Hartford and San Juan (SJU). Several of these routes were previously offered by Frontier, which has become known for quickly dropping underperforming routes.
While we could not keep track of every schedule change around the globe, plenty of cool new services are coming to the US and North America over the next few months. These range from budget options to more luxurious offerings abroad.
Irish carrier Aer Lingus has started new nonstop service between Dublin (DUB) and Minneapolis/St. Paul (MSP). With the new route, which launched earlier in July, MSP becomes the carrier’s 13th US destination.
For the first month of service, Aer Lingus is operating six flights a week between DUB and MSP with plans to go daily in August. The route is the first to the Irish capital from the Twin Cities.
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Air Canada will resume its “full India schedule” by this fall, with flights from Vancouver (YVR) to DEL resuming in August, and from Toronto (YYZ) to DEL and BOM in October.
“We are very pleased to resume our daily, non-stop Toronto-Delhi flights in time for Diwali celebrations,” Mark Galardo, Vice President, Network Planning at Air Canada, said in a statement. “With our Delhi flights returning to normal together with our seasonal return to Mumbai for fall firmly demonstrating our long term commitment to this vibrant market, we look forward to operating our full schedule to India.”
Air France and KLM showed interest in expanding into one of Skyteam partner Delta Air Lines’s focus cities in the United States. This expansion would be a key step in the carriers’ efforts to expand across the North Atlantic.
Atlanta-based Delta considers Austin (AUS), Cincinnati (CVG), Nashville (BNA), Raleigh/Durham (RDU), and San Jose (SJC) in California focus cities that complement its network of hubs. Air France-KLM hasn’t revealed which city it has in mind, but has said that – whatever happens – it does not plan to decrease capacity in 2020.
This month, Azerbaijan Airlines reversed its decision to cease US operations and announced that its route from JFK to Baku, Azerbaijan (GYD), would continue through summer 2020. This means the twice-weekly route will continue to be the carrier’s only service to America. The airline will operate the flight with a Boeing 787.
Norwegian Air has decided to cut service to Las Vegas from its schedule as it focuses aircraft on its most profitable routes.
The Oslo-based airline will not resume its seasonal flight between Las Vegas (LAS) and London Gatwick (LGW) this winter after ending service in March. The flight, which was the carrier’s only route from Las Vegas, operated twice weekly on a Boeing 787.
Norwegian will also move two routes to San Francisco (SFO) from nearby Oakland (OAK). Flights to Barcelona (BCN) will begin operating from San Francisco on Oct. 28, and service to Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG) on Oct. 30. Both routes operate twice weekly.
The Oneworld carrier’s new Chicago-Brisbane route will be tied with its Perth-London Heathrow route for longest flight by duration, with both scheduled for 17:20 hours. Flights begin on April 20.
Qantas is also adding service between Brisbane and SFO with flights beginning on Feb. 9.
Canadian ultra-low-cost-carrier Swoop is adding San Diego to its list of destinations this October.
Starting Oct. 4, the WestJet-owned airline will begin thrice-weekly service to San Diego from both Abbotsford (YXX), British Columbia, and Edmonton (YEG), Alberta. Swoops flies a fleet of Boeing 737-800 aircraft.
Featured photo by Darren Murph / The Points Guy.
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