Happy Monday… I’m starting my vacation now. I’ll be back with regular posts next Monday.
Oh my, where has the summer gone? The kids in Airlineville are starting to go back to school, and that means the adult residents are dreaming of a Delta-free world where more people want their wares. Some of that concern is reflected in the Cirium data this week.
The Eagle is having supply chain problems at work, so it has to scale back its biggest fall and winter plans. Meanwhile, the Taxi is getting a little more cautious after things got out of control this summer. The Widget and Ms Blue are trying to look further into the future while the Globe had to give up on four pet projects. Oh, and the Animal? Well, it looks like he’s feeling wobbly about the next couple months.
All this and more this week. Like sands through the hourglass, so are the skeds of air lines.
Air Canada Cuts US Flying Down
Air Canada was looking a little more bullish at the US with borders opening, but this week it pulled things down in September. It won’t fly to Austin, Charlotte, Cincinnati, or from Newark to Vancouver. It also pulled down frequency elsewhere as it tries to find the right mix to match demand.
Alaska Cuts Thanksgiving, Adds Three
Alaska pruned its schedule around Thanksgiving to line up with demand, so if you’ve booked something then, you may very well have a schedule change email sitting in your inbox. It also added three new winter, Saturday-only routes from San Francisco to Loreto, Mazatlan, and Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo.
American Takes Long-Haul Down
American has given up on Boeing. The airline told me that while it was supposed to take delivery of 12 787s this year, it has so far only received one. And now it is assuming it won’t get any more for the rest of the year. Instead of dragging A330s or 767s out of storage, it is pulling down flights primarily in the Atlantic and Latin America. Asia is untouched except for extending the China suspension through October. (The airline is also adding widebody flights from Miami to LA and JFK.)
- Amsterdam – Philly won’t operate through winter, but Amsterdam – DFW will instead operate, but it will go as little as 3x weekly during December.
- Barcelona – Miami won’t operate the first half of Nov, and then JFK won’t operate the second half through Jan 4.
- Dublin – Philly will operate only in the first half of Dec until after the holidays.
- Frankfurt – DFW won’t operate the first half of Nov, and then Charlotte won’t operate the second half through Jan 4.
- London/Heathrow gets a pandemic extension. Charlotte, LA, and Miami drop from 2x to 1x daily while Chicago drops from 3x to 1x. DFW goes from 24x weekly to 2x daily and JFK goes from 27x weekly to 2x daily. Phoenix and Raleigh/Durham won’t operate this winter.
- Madrid – DFW and Philly won’t operate through winter and JFK will be suspended for the first half of Nov.
- Milan – JFK is the only Milan flight scheduled this winter, but it will not operate between Nov 3 and Jan 4.
- Munich – Charlotte is the only Munich flight scheduled this winter, but it will not operate until Dec 17. (Remember when US Airways was a part of Star Alliance? My, how airports and their importance in a network change.)
- Paris/CDG – Chicago and Philly won’t operate through winter, JFK is suspended for the first half of Nov and then DFW is suspended from then through Jan 4.
- Rome – Philly was the only Rome flight scheduled this winter, but now it won’t operate until Mar 4.
- Zurich – Philly is the only Zurich flight scheduled this winter, but it will not operate until Dec 17.
In Latin, the cuts are just frequency reductions:
- Montevideo – Miami will drop from as high as 1x daily to 3x weekly.
- Rio – JFK and Miami both drop from as high as 1x daily to 3x weekly.
- Santiago – DFW and JFK both drop from as high as 1x daily to 3x weekly.
- Sao Paulo – DFW will drop from as high as 1x daily to 3x weekly. Miami will drop from 2x to 1x daily.
And it’s a domestic route, but Chicago – Honolulu won’t operate this winter.
Delta Cuts Big Into Next Year
After getting close to setting its schedules for this year, Delta has taken a whack at next year. Between January and May, Delta cut between 4 and 8 percent of seat miles. This looks a lot like Delta trying to clean up its placeholder schedule with something a little closer to reality but still far from it since we’re so far away.
Buried in here, however, there are some routes that look to be gone for good. Current and former focus cities take the biggest hit. Raleigh/Durham says goodbye to Baltimore, Hartford, Indianapolis, Nashville, and Cincinnati. Cincy also loses Baltimore and Philly. In random route land, Detroit – San Jose seems to be gone as does JFK – Montreal and Minneapolis – Tucson.
Frontier Cuts Early and Adds Late
Frontier has cut 1 percent of seat miles for August and September. These cuts look like demand-related concerns thanks to the rise of the Delta variant. But starting in November, Frontier is back adding again with these mostly Miami-focused routes from the press release.
JetBlue Makes Changes in 2022
JetBlue has cut down January flights through mid-February. January is now showing up 6 percent vs 2019 which looks like it’ll be fairly accurate, or as accurate as you can be this far out. The changes are all over the map with Newark being pulled down a lot and LaGuardia and Washington/National going up. The thing is, this mostly aligns with what is filed this fall, so it just means the placeholder is highly inaccurate.
Spirit Pulls Down Capacity
Spirit has pulled down flights from November 17 through January 4. This cut looks broad and blunt and doesn’t feel even remotely like a final cut. There may very well be an operational component to this. There was one new add that I thought worth mentioning. LaGuardia – Phoenix weekend service will start in November. Thanks for the perimeter rules that apply during the week, this can only be flown on weekends, just like the LA service it started earlier this year.
United Kicks Four to the Curb From Houston
United had high hopes for some new pandemic routes, but four of them have not ended well. Houston to Abilene and Chattanooga started in October, Tallahassee in November, and San Angelo in April. Those are all gone. For three of those cities, this is the end of their stay in the United network. Only Chattanooga remains with Chicago service.
United also pulled down some more hub overflight markets from San Francisco. Columbus, Northwest Arkansas, and Oklahoma City are gone into February.
- Aeromexico will put its 787s on 2x daily LAX flights and 1x daily JFK flight, both from Mexico City, this fall.
- Air France will start JFK – Guadeloupe in November using its Caribbean-based A320s. It will also bring back Seattle – Paris/CDG that month.
- Asiana canceled Honolulu service through year-end while cutting back frequency in its other US gateways.
- Azul will pull Campinas – Fort Lauderdale down from 5x to 4x weekly.
- British Airways continues to cut US flying, this time through September. Austin, Baltimore, Nashville, New Orleans, and San Diego won’t operate while other markets see frequency cuts.
- Cabo Verde Airlines continues to torment me. The Boston – Praia route is off yet again. Apparently they are still paying someone to file schedules just for fun.
- Contour will replace Boutique in the Greenville (MS) market with flights to DFW and Nashville starting in October.
- Eastern will take a shot at Miami – Santa Cruz (Bolivia) from November. It briefly tried that last December.
- Fiji Airways will cut Honolulu – Kiribati flights through the winter, instead taking that once weekly flight and increasing frequency direct to Nadi.
- Iberia will drop from 2x daily to 13x weekly between Miami and Madrid this winter while Chicago to Madrid goes from 1x daily to 5x weekly.
- Singapore will restart LAX – Taipei flights after more than a decade away.
- Virgin Atlantic moved its Glasgow – Orlando flights over to Edinburgh.
That’s all for this week. Stay tuned for next week’s exciting episode. But if you want more, you can always become a subscriber to Cranky Network Weekly. This week, we look in greater detail at:
- 787 Delays Lead American to Slash Long-Haul
- Spirit Cuts Its Schedule Through the Holidays
- Delta Cuts Back Focus Cities Yet Again
- United Gives Up on 4 Pandemic Experiments
- JetBlue’s Uneven 2022 Cuts