Over the weekend, Delta and United filed their June schedules, and again, I dove into Diio by Cirium data to see how things look. Compared to the American filing from last week, United and Delta look pretty conservative. Here’s a comparison between the three.
American’s June schedule looks downright enormous compared to Delta and United, each of which are operating near half of what American is planning. Of course, we don’t know for sure that all of these will operate. We can always look back in July and do the math on that, but for now, we’ll take these airlines at their words.
Let’s take a look at Delta and United in greater detail since American went under the microscope next week.
Delta Returns to New York, Small Growth Elsewhere
In the month of June, Delta will add back flying on 23 routes that didn’t operate in May. Here’s a look at twenty of them, color-coded by hub.
As you can see, the bulk of the returning flying is a still-modest ramp up in New York. New York had been pulled down to nothing, so this isn’t all that bold. It’s just an acknowledgment that demand may begin to return ever-so-slightly. Not shown on the map are Delta’s summer return to the Alaska markets of Juneau, Ketchikan, and Sitka from Seattle as required by the CARES Act.
So, New York ramps up, but it does lose one route: the flight from JFK to Bangor. Delta is relocating that to Detroit. Other than that, Delta will pull out of two others that operated in May: Albuquerque to Los Angeles and Detroit to San Antonio.
Keep in mind that the recent announcement that the airline would pull out of 10 secondary airports goes into effect in May so it’s not reflected here in the month-to-month comparison. That being said, it’s worth highlighting the 10 airports (listed first) that lose all service from Delta until at least September.
- Akron/Canton (currently to Atlanta)
- Burbank (currently to Salt Lake City)
- Chicago/Midway (currently to Atlanta)
- Long Beach (currently to Salt Lake City)
- Manchester, NH (currently to Detroit)
- Newport News (currently to Atlanta)
- Oakland (currently to Salt Lake City)
- Providence (currently to Detroit)
- Stewart/Newburgh (currently to Detroit)
- Westchester (currently suspended due to runway construction)
Looking at frequencies, only four routes will lose more than a daily flight. That includes Minneapolis to San Antonio alongside Atlanta to Evansville, Springfield (MO), and Tri-Cities. There are 76 routes gaining an additional daily frequency in June. Half of those are from Atlanta, most going from two to three flights per day. The rest are scattered around the other hubs.
United Builds Up Newark, Even Less Growth Elsewhere
Meanwhile, United appears to be looking at things similarly here. Its big growth is in Newark, which had been pulled down to near nothing. Here are all but five of the routes coming back:
Beyond Newark, you do see some limited additions out of Chicago and Denver here. Denver to Paine Field, for example, will replace the flight from Portland in May that was just meant to keep the airport with any service as required by the CARES Act. Not on the map include a seasonal return in the Washington/Dulles to Nantucket market as well as four Hawaiian flights that had been cut… Los Angeles to Honolulu and San Francisco to Kahului, Kona, and Lihu’e.
The only other markets — besides Paine Field to Portland — losing service in June versus May are seasonal routes from Chicago/O’Hare to Key West and from Washington/Dulles to West Palm Beach.
Frequency changes are remarkably minor. There are 7 markets from Chicago and Denver that drop either from 7 to 3 weekly or 14 to 10 weekly frequencies. Only one market loses more than that, Denver to Wichita drops from 2 daily to 1. Frequency additions are even more sparse. Chicago/O’Hare to Allentown/Bethlehem goes up from 3 to 7 weekly flights while Denver to Portland (OR) and San Francisco to Honolulu each go from 1 daily to 2 daily. The big winner is Los Angeles to San Francisco which increases from 2 daily to 4 daily.
As you can see from this, Delta and United are far less confident of any significant return of demand in June. Other than trying to restore New York and Newark from near zero, the rest of these appear to be just tweaks. American appers more bullish, but we won’t really know until we see what the airline actually flies that month, not just what it schedules.