Welcome back. The Eskimo has been busy shrinking in October, but it is not alone. Nay. The Eagle, the Widget, and the Heart have all made cuts of their own. But some are more targeted than others.
It’s not all bad news. Pualani has been anxiously awaiting the day she could receive visitors in her home state, and that day now appears to be on the horizon. She is actively — but cautiously — preparing. Meanwhile, several others have been scheming for a longer term recovery with a variety of new ideas, some that target others’ turf in Airlineville.
All this and more in this week’s episode. Like sands through the hourglass, so are the Skeds of air Lines.
Alaska Cuts in the Northwest, Add New Routes Against JetBlue
October was already cut significantly, but Alaska is still trimming. Some of these cuts make sense. Canada, for example, was pulled down once it was announced that the border would remain closed for yet another month. Flights to Hawai’i were also trimmed since the place won’t open up until mid-October at the earliest. But there was more than that.
In October, Alaska is cutting frequencies on routes like Seattle to JFK and San Francisco; Portland to Austin, Missoula, and Spokane; Los Angeles to Santa Rosa; and San Francisco to JFK. In better news, Vegas to Seattle sees a sizable increase in frequency in October. But what’s more interesting are the new routes being introduced from December 17.
- Los Angeles to Cancun (1x daily until April 12) and Reno (1x daily, no end)
- Palm Springs to Boise and Reno (1x daily in each until April 12) along with San Jose (2x daily until May 20, then 1x daily through summer)
Those LAX routes happen to be ones that JetBlue just announced it would start flying. Nobody is going to let JetBlue get a toe-hold in this market. Palm Springs is more about opportunity presenting itself as the city sees hopes of high demand.
Allegiant Pulls November Down
It wasn’t a huge cut, but Allegiant’s November schedule was cut by 9.5 percent (in terms of flights). Several frequencies were cut, but 18 routes will go away the entire month.
- Austin – Des Moines, Grand Rapids, Indianapolis
- Fort Walton Beach – Knoxville
- Jacksonville – Indianapolis, Norfolk
- Las Vegas – San Antonio
- Myrtle Beach – Cincinnati, Newburgh
- New Orleans – Grand Rapids, Louisville
- Orlando/Sanford – Albany
- Punta Gorda – Richmond
- Sarasota – Knoxville
- Savannah – Newburgh
- West Palm Beach – Concord (NC), Knoxville, Memphis
American Delays Latin and Seattle, Adds Outdoor and Mexico
I wouldn’t have expected this to be a busy weekend for American, but it sure was. In October, American has cut back frequencies on a variety of routes, but it also added some new leisure routes for the long run.
First, American has previously mentioned it was axing service to 15 small cities on October 1, and it finally filed the schedules. Only 11 cities will get cut for now. Roswell (NM) and Stillwater (OK) have gotten their way out of trouble. Meanwhile, Joplin (MO) and Sioux City (IA) have had their deaths deferred while American looks for regulatory approval.
In Latin America, American has pushed DFW – Lima, JFK – Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo, and Miami – Rio from an October 24/25 restart to a December 17/18 restart. And in Seattle, all the growth American planned to roll out in October has now been pulled back. That means frequency reductions everywhere, but it also means Seattle service to LA and Miami won’t begin at all until November at the earliest.
In the longer run, we have some increases in Mexico/Caribbean frequencies, but we also see a bunch of new routes entering the schedule.
- Charlotte to Bozeman (1x daily Dec 17 – Apr 5), Jackson Hole (1x weekly Dec 19 – Apr 3), and Montrose (1x weekly Dec 19 – Jan 2)
- Dallas/Fort Worth – La Paz Mexico (1x weekly starts Dec 19), Loreto Mexico (1x weekly Dec 19 – May 1), and San Salvador (1x daily starts Nov 5)
- Phoenix – La Paz Mexico (3x weekly from Dec 19) and Loreto Mexico (4x weekly Dec 17 – May 3)
Lastly — despite the growth in all these outdoorsy markets — Boston to Jackson Hole , which was going to operate this winter, is now gone.
Delta Holiday Tweaks, Launches New LA Flights
Delta continues to remain relatively quiet, but it did move some flights up, push others back, and launch a couple new ones.
Let’s start with the short-haul new or accelerated routes. There are a few moves to bulk up frequencies during the winter holidays to beach destinations. I won’t detail those here since most unsurprising. It’s also natural to see the building of flights from the Atlanta hub to outdoor destinations, but LA to Fresno and Palm Springs are strange adds.
- Atlanta – Boise 1x daily starts Nov 20
- Atlanta – Reno 1x daily starts Nov 20
- Atlanta – Spokane 1x daily starts Nov 20
- Boston – Cancun start moved up from Dec 19 to Nov 20
- Detroit – Bloomington/Normal 5x weekly starts Oct 11 (currently only served from Atlanta)
- Los Angeles – Fresno 1x daily starts Nov 20
- Los Angeles – Palm Springs 1x daily starts Nov 20
- Los Angeles – Reno 1x daily starts Nov 20 in advance of original 2x daily Dec 19 start date
- New York/LaGuardia – Sarasota 1x daily starts Nov 20 in advance of original 2x daily Dec 19 start date
There are a couple cuts too. Delta is finally, mercifully, pulling out of Worcester (MA), leaving that airport empty. Also, the Atlanta to Westchester restart has been pushed to January 1.
Internationally, it’s a bit more muddled with frequency cuts on several routes through the winter.
- Atlanta – Buenos Aires and Quito restarts have been pushed from October to December 18.
- Atlanta – Lagos has been delayed from an October re-start to November, but then it will bulk up to daily.
- JFK – Barcelona, Dublin, Frankfurt, Madrid, and Rome along with Boston – London each lose one weekly frequency through the winter.
- JFK – Brussels and Zurich along with Paris – Seattle were supposed to restart in October, but now that’s delayed until November. They’ll operate only 3x weekly through the winter after that.
- JFK – Milan is a winner here with 1 extra weekly frequency through the winter.
- Minneapolis – Amsterdam is another winner. It wasn’t supposed to start until the summer season begins on March 27, but 3x weekly service will now start on October 25.
Hawaiian Prepares for Tourism to Return
The state of Hawai’i says it will allow visitors with a negative COVID test to come visit without quarantine beginning October 15. Whether that holds or not is unknown, but Hawaiian is preparing for that possibility.
In the first half of October, Hawaiian resumes its first international route with very infrequent Honolulu – Tokyo/Narita flights. All other international has been canceled through the month of October.
On the domestic front, Honolulu sees the return of Las Vegas flights and Kahului gets its flying back to other neighbor islands in early October. Then in the back half of October, the full domestic network returns at varying frequencies. We’ll see if that’s a placeholder or not in the coming weeks.
Southwest Cuts Hawai’i in October, Builds Up Elsewhere
It wasn’t a busy week for Southwest, but the airline did decide to cut Hawai’i flying through the month of October. Only Honolulu – Oakland and interisland markets will operate. It also pulled Havana flights.
Meanwhile, it added frequencies into Florida and on some intra-West routes like Phoenix – Salt Lake and Vegas – Sacramento.
United Adds LaGuardia – Palm Beach
United did very little this week, but it did add in flights from New York/LaGuardia to West Palm Beach during the peak holiday season. It also cut frequencies in several West Coast markets, primarily touching Oregon and California.
That’s it for this week’s episode. Stay tuned next week for more Skeds of air Lines.