European Airlines Return US Service While Others Cut Into the New Year

Schedule Changes

What’s this? A resident of Airlineville that’s starting to feel good about life? It seems unlikely, but indeed, the Queen has started making some more plans. I guess that’s what happens when the borders open up so she is actually allowed to come visit. The Eagle couldn’t be more pleased.

The Cirium data was again heavy with change this week, though much of it was just a shuffling of deck chairs as opposed to something more significant. The Taxi has finally set his holiday plans while Ms Blue and the Eskimo are looking further beyond the horizon. Is it too early for spring cleaning? Apparently not.

All this and more this week. Like sands through the hourglass, so are the skeds of air lines.

Alaska Pulls Down 2022

Alaska pulled out the ole’ axe and chopped down schedules from February into March by 13 percent and 10.5 percent respectively. Other than that, it was pretty quiet, but the airline did decide it’ll fly Portland – Paine Field from Feb through Apr when it was supposed to suspend the route.

Allegiant Hates Jackson Hole

Or maybe Jackson Hole hates Allegiant. Flights to Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Phoenix/Mesa, and Reno are gone through the winter. Allegiant also canceled Houston to Fort Walton Beach/Destin and Savannah through the winter.

American Tinkers

It was a week with a lot of interesting little nuggets from American. The airline will fly Austin – Salt Lake and Sarasota on Saturdays over the holidays along with Philly – Daytona Beach on a more robust holiday schedule.

Internationally, DFW-Madrid is now going to fly this winter. Service restarts in December. It’s also boosting DFW – Paris from 1x to 2x next summer. Oh, and the Beijing switch to Capital airport must have been a mistake. It’s now switched back to Daxing, whenever it starts.

Delta Gives Boston a Boost

Delta is pouring more capacity into Boston, including some surprising routes. Both Athens and Tel Aviv will operate next summer. It’s also adding Baltimore, Denver, and San Diego.

In other news, Delta was just kidding about canceling Salt Lake – Durango entirely. It’s now back for a brief holiday appearance. And JFK – Sao Paulo’s restart has moved up from February to December.

JetBlue Brings Reality to Spring

JetBlue took February down 6.4 percent, March down 22 percent, and April down 17.6 percent as it tries to get the months closer to reality. It also reworked its Washington/National plans. It will grow Boston flights from around 9 a day up toward 15, rallying mostly around its focus cities instead of flying point-to-point.

Also, Boston – Portland (OR) was going to be suspended into February. Now it’s gone through May. The same goes for Aguadilla to Fort Lauderdale and Newark. Newark also loses Port-au-Prince while Raleigh/Durham – San Juan and Richmond Tampa meet the same fate. Bozeman loses Boston and LA in April and May. Boston – Palm Springs won’t fly in February or March, but it currently shows coming back in April, presumably for Coachella. Palm Springs will get Fort Lauderdale back in March and April.

Spirit Finally Adjusts the Holidays

Despite already having made adjustments in January, Spirit kept its holiday schedule rather vague. It has finally pulled the trigger on cuts, pulling down capacity during the off peak days while keeping the peaks relatively close to where they were. The pre-holiday period saw a bit of a haircut as well.

Beyond that, it appears that Greensboro – Orlando has been removed for good. Sorry, Greensboro, but I’m sure it’s all High Point’s fault.

United Smashes China

United has decided to give up completely on China flying through the full winter… with one exception. And for once, that exception is not Shanghai – Incheon. Starting in January, it is hoping to resume flying nonstop from Shanghai to San Francisco 4x weekly instead.

On an unrelated note, Newark – Lima is also gone through winter.

Other Randomness

  • Advanced Air will have the Merced essential air service contract starting in January when it will fly to both LA and Vegas.
  • Air France now won’t fly Miami – Point-a-Pitre and Port-au-Prince through the winter.
  • Air New Zealand will only serve the Auckland – LA route in the US through the winter. It will fly 3x weekly.
  • Avelo filed its new Burbank – Tucson flight to operate 2x weekly.
  • British Airways is actually adding service for November now that the US border should be opening. Baltimore and Newark rejoin the network, with Orlando getting Gatwick service back.
  • Caribbean Airlines won’t fly Fort Lauderdale – Port of Spain through winter.
  • Condor is going back into JFK – Frankfurt from November.
  • Denver Air Connection has reduced Clovis service from Denver, instead spreading the wealth to also connect Clovis to Dallas/Fort Worth.
  • EVA has extended its pandemic schedule through year-end. That means 3x weekly from Taipei to LA along with 2x weekly to New York/JFK and Seattle.
  • Lufthansa has downgauged Orlando – Frankfurt from a 747-400 to an A340-300. Yes, it still flies those.
  • Singapore has filed schedules returning JFK – Frankfurt and San Francisco – Hong Kong in November.
  • Surinam Airways has reinstated Miami – Georgetown from November.
  • Ukraine International has canceled its JFK flight from Kiev.
  • Ultimate Air Charters has filed schedules through the end of the year. Cincinnati/Lunken will have service to Cleveland/Lakefront, DeKalb (GA), and Nashville.
  • Virgin Atlantic has canceled London/Heathrow – Washington/Dulles flying through the winter while Seattle is gone only through year-end.
  • WestJet pulled down its November schedule by just over 11 percent. It’s mostly frequency reduction, but San Jose (CR) – Toronto will not operate through April.

That’s all for this week. Stay tuned for next week’s exciting episode of Skeds of air Lines.

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37 comments on “European Airlines Return US Service While Others Cut Into the New Year


      “During the summer 2019 season, Condor offered 10 routes to the US, flying from Frankfurt to Anchorage (ANC), Baltimore Washington (BWI), JFK, Las Vegas (LAS), Minneapolis/St Paul (MSP), New Orleans (MSY), Phoenix Sky Harbor (PHX), Pittsburgh (PIT), Portland (PDX) and Seattle.”

      I don’t actually recall that, but as a west coaster the east coast routes are usually off my radar. But there were multiple other stories talking about Condor bringing that route back.

  1. I never had a chance to fly them, but I’ve always liked the Ultimate Air Charters concept, and I’m glad to see that they have survived COVID thus far.

    Regarding DL’s JFK to Sao Paulo flight, air cargo rates from the US to BR continue to be on the high side. Even if DL can’t quite get as many butts the seats on that route (especially VFR traffic over the holidays) as it would like, cargo in the belly should help the economics of that route a little.

    1. I flew them once from MDW to LUK and really enjoyed the service. It’s a little strange leaving from the FBO on the south side of Midway but not having to go through security made boarding a breeze. The fact that they offered free booze and a cheese tray for the short flight was also a bonus. Overall, I’d definitely fly them again. However, LUK was kind of a pain in terms of proximity to where I needed to be. For city pairs that have high average airfares, I think they have a nice a little niche carved out. Finally, the 328Jet is a beautiful piece of engineering.

      1. From what I’ve seen when looking at UAS’ schedules in the past, they appeared to have the trips timed to allow for day trips for Cincinnati business travelers, such that one can often avoid the expense of a hotel (or a very long day of travel) by using them.

        Cincinnati to Chicago is an interesting route in particular, as it’s a ~4-5 hour drive, and the landside time would be a significant portion of any journey via air, so I can see where there may be some value in UAS’ service.

  2. Austin-Sarasota/Bradenton on AA is interesting, even if only once a week. Is there really enough demand, or is this just another “throw a pin out of Austin on the map and see what sticks?”

    Also wonder if at some point the Biden Administration is going to take another look at EAS, Merced seems to be a bit of a stretch with FAT only an hour or so away offering one-connection service to most of the country. Admittedly, the administration has a lot on its plate right now.

    1. Yes, and pissing off a few small-town EAS-beneficiary democrats to save a few million doesn’t seem like it would be high on the to-do list. As an avgeek you realize that EAS is pretty silly, but it’s never going anywhere and it gives us some interesting operators, so it’s a nice guilty pleasure.

      1. True, but I could see EAS-supported destinations limited to places where the service is a little more…well, essential, not places like Merced where it’s an hour down the freeway to an airport connected to major hubs.

  3. Since China has said it will not likely reopen its borders before Spring, United’s China cuts are not a surprise – just as Delta cut China for the winter several months ago. United might be trying to convince its crew to operate nonstop from the US to China and China might be relaxing crew accommodation requirements for foreign crews, but there will not be much capacity between the US and East Asia until those countries believe they see covid under control both in their countries as well as the US.
    Delta’s Boston expansion follows its game plan in Seattle, although somewhat in reverse where Delta built the international network first and then added domestic capacity. Boston obviously has a robust global economy and Delta is painting itself as the most global and reliable airline from Boston just as it did in Seattle. There are clearly passengers that value Delta’s much higher reliability and Delta is certain to let corporate clients and agents know that.
    Many who are pushing back against the DOJ’s suit against AA/B6 are undoubtedly cheering Delta’s BOS expansion as proof that there is a competitive marketplace in the NE- but I think they miss the point. The DOJ doesn’t want a duopoly between AA/B6 and DL but rather want low cost carriers that can provide pricing discipline to both global carriers to have sufficient access and the ability to compete.
    JBLU’s capacity relative to DL has been much lower than it has been in recent years and DL likely is building BOS aggressively knowing that AA/B6 have committed to growing NYC. AA chose B6 as a partner because of low costs but B6 doesn’t have the resources to build both. DL also could be making a play with Massport for additional gates.
    Finally, while long term schedules are not final anywhere, DL is clearly committing to BOS as its growth project for 2022 given that other hubs are not seeing near as much growth. However, it is worth noting that DL’s capacity in AUS for summer 2022 is also up by double digits as a result of increased frequency on existing routes; even if DL is still #3 but a fast growing #3 in AUS as it is in BOS.

    1. Oh, you can bet AA/B6 will use this as proof that NEA increases competition in the northeast. Without that AA & B6 announcement about BOS expansion, DL would not have made the change a week later that BOS-LAX was going back to all lie flat and then the BOS-DFW/CLT/YYZ route announcement. There will be plenty of evidence that BOS fares are going down after this.

      Keep dreaming about Boston, there isn’t more gates to be found. The only terminal project right now and for the next few years is E and B6 grabbed the gates next to C already. That’s what they get for flying 3x daily out of ORH. Unless MassPort can just put all the international carriers that have been waiting for gates on the street, the most DL can do would be to schedule a couple of flights in E where it will have to be in the same CUTE mix as everyone else. DL right now is very optimistic about TATL demand for summer of 2022. I bet a good chunk of these flights get trimmed when they are faced with the reality that international demand isn’t there. The reality for DL is that is has a huge gate deficit and that won’t change. It could’ve used this period to really grow and dominate at LAX, but it chose to fight back at BOS because it’s pissed off about NEA. And of course, is has decided to sacrifice its middle of the country presence (that was very profitable pre-COVID) in order to maintain its capacity at a very competitive and unprofitable BOS market. Just take a look at all the midwest markets where it now trails behind AA and partners in market share.

      Is there a chance that DL will have equal or more flight than B6 next summer at BOS? Sure. B6 will probably be close to 150 flights a day and who knows what DL will end up operating. But that’s where the partnership comes in. AA & B6 has pretty much everything covered. And B6 will be taking a lot of deliveries in 2023/2024. Its mainline pilot group is going to be up close to 20% over the next 18 months. B6 is not going to lose its long term position at BOS as long as aircraft is still coming in and it still has a massive gate advantage.

      By the time summer of 2023 rolls around, B6 will be back to probably 170 to 180 flights a day with 30% of that on A220-300 and probably be flying to London and Paris.

      DL’s play was always hoping to be the legacy carrier of choice in Boston and pick up AA’s ff base there. Even without schedule coordination, codesharing alone with B6 allows AA to keep its ff base. There just isn’t a play here.

      What’s DL’s play after 2022 at BOS? It doesn’t have more gates. It will restore some frequencies along the way, but that would be it. And at some point, BOS will have slots.

      In the mean time, AS is clearly ramping back up in SEA before everywhere else. It’s going to lose gates if it doesn’t speed things up out there. It’s LAX terminal project will be done, so it better be ready to add there also.

      1. We can’t debate airline motivations since we weren’t at the table but we can see actual facts.

        Delta has already become the largest airline at LAX.

        Show us the contract that B6 has for exclusive use of BOS E concourse gates. At best, I would bet that their arrangement is preferential and they may be subject to common use as well. and if B6 does have exclusive or even preferential use, that is precisely the concern that the DOJ has – for two airlines to partner to control a large percentage of gates at an airport – and the concern has nothing to do with Delta.

        Delta clearly has enough gates to operate a 160 flight/day operation at BOS. Since DL had a hefty revenue premium to B6 pre-covid and that will likely continue, DL will likely become the largest airline by revenue at BOS. For summer 2022 schedules, DL has scheduled more ASMs than B6 in BOS which has never happened since B6 started building BOS as a hub/focus city.

        And the real issue is that B6 simply does not have the aircraft to add a bunch of flights at LGA and JFK under the slot swap plans as well as regrow their BOS hub. If DL is doing anything, it is taking advantage of that reality. But Delta said all along it was building

        Delta and Alaska are maintaining similar levels of capacity relative to each other in SEA.

        As much as some want to see Delta’s growth in major markets as an existential threat to other carriers, AS and DL have figured out to compete effectively against each other and aren’t out to obliterate the other. JetBlue is just fixated on making the AA partnership work while Delta is focused on growing its network as it did pre-covid.

        DL has been dead on about predicting demand during the pandemic. If they think it is time to grow their network by next summer, I’m not sure why we should believe that AA will succeed out of NYC but DL can’t out of BOS.

        as for the comments about OT below, everyone does well in the fall and spring. The DOT tracks on-time statistics on a year round basis. For 2021 YTD through July, DL’s on-time is 8 points better than AA and 17 points better than B6. And the DOT DOES measure on-time from the same hubs for all airlines. B6 simply overschedules and posts well below average on-time while AA and UA are about average, WN is slightly below average and DL consistently posts the best on-time of any of the continental US airlines; only HA is better and that has been true for all of 2019 and 2020 and is true for this year so far.

        1. B6 announced 30 gates with MassPort back in 2019, which included just E1, but we know they subsequently started using 2 or 3 other E gates pretty heavily also. Basically, the gates closes to C are pretty much all became preferential gates for B6. The only major active project at BOS is E. There just aren’t additional gates for DL. And if there were additional gates, B6 will make sure it gets a healthy portion of those.

          Saying DL have a hefty revenue premium over B6 is funny. DL out of BOS is a bottom 5 percentile station in profitability, but an above average station for B6. Care to find a few routes outside of DL hubs where they operate similar sized aircraft and DL achieve better yield? Even among routes where DL flies smaller planes than B6, it had yield deficit in many cases. The reality is that B6 gets far and away the largest POS from Boston. As long as DL can’t win a large portion of ff that prefer legacy airlines, it’s always going to struggle in Boston. Legacies need large network and connectivity to dominate local market to make profit in a hub. DL has neither.

          I think DL originally planned to bring BOS back slowly and grow in the west. SEA had the largest mainline pilot growth. SLC, with the new terminal expansion, is the most profitable place for new flights. LAX is the largest O&D airport in the country. All these are more important hubs for DL. It even announced that BOS-LAX was doing away with lie flat seating. Then, AA&B6 came out with its major announcement for not only BOS, but JFK & LGA. So it seemed to me DL got pissed off and decided to abandon its original plan and get back into market share battle mode. The reality is that DL had cut down BOS so much for so long that it really turned off a lot of people that still flew out of BOS. With NEA announcements, the perception is that AA & B6 is where you want to be if you want to have the most complete network. So in order to combat that narrative, DL is doing its own press to say that it’s also large in BOS. But the reality is that AA & B6 do have a more complete network. Outside of few very optimistic summer only TATL routes, DL really has no advantage in network here even when B6 is not putting in a lot of effort.

          This will probably spur B6 into bringing back BWI sooner and maybe add a flight or 2 on BOS-ATL/DTW/MSP and add 1 or 2 new markets. But anything more would pull resources away from NYC and AA can’t keep flying empty RJs out of JFK/LGA to nearby markets forever.

          DL I think is making a huge mistake here. Either SEA or BOS should’ve been abandoned to speed up their growth at LAX and SLC. They ended up growing neither and gave up their position as top legacy airline in all those midwest markets like IND and CMH to AA. It will probably also lose out to AA at RDU also and start to decline in CVG as it had in MEM. Those middle of the country markets really are what drives big 4 margins.

          1. We’re all entitled to our opinions but we aren’t entitled to make up our own facts.
            Please provide a published source for profitability for ANY and ALL US carrier hubs. Doesn’t exist other than in internal guesstimates at various competitors.
            Delta is still 45% larger in RDU than American as of this month.
            For the year ended in the first quarter, Delta rec’d average fares 25% higher than the market average in BOS, slightly higher than United which always runs above other eastern US heavy carriers given UA’s western-heavy network. DL’s average fare is higher than both B6 and AA even with very little international traffic and given that B6 still flies more to the western US than Delta.
            again, show us where JetBlue has exclusive or even preferential use of all of the E concourse gates. I doubt if they do and Massport will always favor longhaul widebody international growth from ANY carrier for E concourse gates over domestic shorthaul.
            And I’m not sure that Delta even needs any gates on E for departures -but if they want them, it would be for widebody departures.

            Delta clearly has been able to juggle multiple strategic initiatives including growing in both BOS and SEA while also growing in LAX and protecting its core 4 hubs of ATL, DTW, MSP and SLC, the latter of which is growing – along w/ two hubs in NYC.

            Being able to sell services above the cost to produce them is what drives profits for any company; Delta has figured out how to sell its services for more than its competitors while doing a better job of controlling costs.
            After 18 months of sitting quietly while other carriers tried multiple initiatives during the pandemic, Delta is resuming its growth along the same lines as it had pre-pandemic. The latest news about BOS fulfills DL’s commitment to grow BOS which was going to happen regardless of what AA/B6 did. The fact that AA/B6 are throwing their attention at NYC in order to make the NEA work gives DL all the more of a window to grow BOS now since AA and B6 will still be #3 to DL and UA In NYC based on the revenue they each carry (even for each other) since they don’t have a JV. If the DOJ succeeds at halting the slot swapping and schedule coordination parts of the NEA, AA and B6 will lose a significant part of the merger-like benefit of the deal.

            1. You are the one that was wondering about Delta getting more gates and I’m telling there isn’t any available right now. Why would B6 need preferential use of all E gates? They use a couple of gates next to C. That’s all they need. They have 29 preferential gates outside of E. DL cannot make up this gate difference.

              Looking at just average fare ignores stage length, aircraft used. Having a 10% yield premium on 76 seat RJs vs A320/B737 for LCC on a market like BOS-BNA is not a good thing. That’s terrible. You have to compare individual markets. DL clearly does not have fare premium. BOS was a bottom 5 percentile market pre-COVID that will get even worse after losing monopolies to IND/CMH/CVG. DL really needs to dominate routes to make money. LCCs don’t. That’s why both SEA and BOS are way below average markets for DL.

              DL has been shrinking in the middle of the country where it was legacy of choice for many ff. A lot of ff turned off by all those P2P/P2F cuts. AA has its own non-stops, plus partner flights with AS and B6, is gaining in all these non-hub markets against DL. DL, for its own reasons, feels the need to maintain its underperforming hubs and stand up against AA’s partnerships.

              It’s hard to say DL has figured things out, when its revenue is down 30 to 35% in Q3. That’s tied for the worst with UA. DL does seem to have the same overly optimistic view as UA that TATL traffic will bounce back to greater than pre-COVID levels. So, what is it going to do next summer when TATL traffic is 50 or even 70% of pre-COVID levels?

              AS has fully recovered in SEA and will be outpacing DL in SEA growth. DL has missed out a real opportunity to recover and gain even more market share in LAX. DL was really tiny in BOS for all of COVID time and is now suddenly over excited to announce overly ambitious schedule to try to re-capture all the people that already turned to AA & B6.

              AA & B6 was larger than DL for the year up until June in NYC.
              DL 2.7 million vs 2.3 million AA/B6 at LGA
              DL 4.9 million vs 7.4 million AA/B6 at JFK
              DL 800k vs 3.8 million AA/B6 at EWR
              In fact B6 alone was about the same size as DL between the NYC airport.

              So yes, AA & B6 are focusing on NYC more. It’s the larger and more important market. You probably should ask why DL is dropping the ball in NYC? At the same time, AA&B6 have been much larger than BOS throughout the pandemic. A few months over next year where DL is a little closer to them in size will not really change month.

            2. I just realized where your claim of higher fares came from. You basically used Q2 of 2020 to Q1 of 2021 when DL was blocking 40% of the seat during that time and most other airlines only did that for Q2/Q3, when there weren’t that many flights. Good one. Really getting sneaky there, Tim.

        2. You love to say Delta is the largest airline at LAX as though it somehow matters.

          Delta has a compelling product out of LAX but they’re so outmatched by Oneworld, not to mention, AA+B6 it’s not even funny.

          Delta still Doesn’t even fly one of the biggest routes in the country- LAX-ORD. That alone speaks volumes to their strength in the LAX hub that they don’t think they can fly it. To say nothing of the schedule to MiA on AA or Boston and NYC on aa+B6. Then you have AS+AA out of many airports in LA to up and down the west coast.

          In general, mileage programs drive loyalty and delta is heavily outmatched by Mileageplus with United on the West Coast and AAdvantage via B6 and AS.

          Look at nearly any of the key routes out of LAX and AAdvantage has a far more compelling earning and redemption proposition vs Skymiles.

          1. @ Julie,

            While you and I often agree, I feel I have to point out a couple of things.

            First and foremost, the schedules we’re seeing now are temporary. Who “outmatches” who at LAX will probably change in the next few years. It’s likely is that no airline will “outmatch” the others at LAX. In extremely fragmented markets like Los Angeles and New York (and Chicago to some extent), it’s not as important to be number one as it is to be relevant and avoid hemorrhaging gobs of money. American felt it was too small to be relevant in New York. Hence the NEA. The “Perfect Airline” is too small to be relevant in Chicago, so it flies where it can make money. Without the NEA, American’s situation in New York would be the same as the “Perfect Airline’s” is in Chicago. In either case, adjusting capacity to increase profitability is good business. American was too small to be relevant, but too big to be consistently profitable in New York, so it took action to address the situation. If the NEA is shot down, American will probably adopt the “Perfect Airline’s” Chicago operating model in New York – or merge with JetBlue (but that’s sheer speculation). To Tim’s constant talking point about JetBlue’s low costs being a prime factor in an alliance as opposed to a merger, I say bunk. The merged entity’s main competition in New York will be Delta and United, whose costs are in roughly the same ballpark as a merged American/JetBlue’s would be.

            This brings me to my next point – essentially an amplification of what’s above. Size doesn’t matter as much as profitability. Airlines got into a lot of hot water post-deregulation because they felt they had to be everything to everyone and be the biggest, not the most profitable. The result was widespread bankruptcy. It’s not important for every airline to serve every possible route in every possible market. LAX-ORD is a hub-to-hub route for both United and American (i.e., the “Worst Airline in the World” according to some observers). Southwest also flies to Midway from LAX. Why should the “Perfect Airline” fly a route that already has plenty of competition? That’s not smart, and the “Perfect Airline’s” management is smart.

            Finally, as I’ve written more than once, being different isn’t a crime. Why can’t airlines have different business models?

            1. All very fair, accurate, and valid points you bring up.

              My hyperbole was a bit much this morning. I certainly shouldn’t suggest that any airline or alliance will dominate the fragmented market that is LAX. No one will. We agree.

              And you’re certainly right about temporary schedules. As far as I know, gate allocation at lax is generally the same now as pre pandemic which means the status quo potential Hasn’t changed much. Alliances and strategies have changed with carriers at LAX but not gate allocation.

              Per lax-Ord, it just surprises me that a carrier wanting to be a true player in lax still refuses to fly one of the largest markets out of LAX >> Chicago. AA has flown LAX-ATL for years despite delta’s hub-hub dominance of the route. If it were a smaller hub-hub market like lax-clt, I suppose I would get it. But not flying lax-Ord even 2-3x daily strikes me as odd.

            2. The real issue is that Delta is the only one of the big 3 that has managed to grow new hubs and regrow those that it gained through mergers but was unable to develop or decided to no longer support in the past.
              Remember that American and United both had NYC, Chicago and LAX/SFO as major points on their route maps from the beginning. Delta didn’t fly to LAX or NYC until decades into its history. DL gained its size in NYC primarily through acquisitions with Pan Am, the US slot swap and by growing incrementally via other mergers.
              LAX heavily came from Western plus other mergers. DAL acquired Chicago and Southern in the 50s (I think) but decided to not be the third wheel at ORD w/ deregulation. DL is building gates and new facilities in Terminal 5. I don’t think they are any where finished growing at ORD and I expect to see LAX-ORD on the A220 which will make DL by far the lowest cost operator of the big 3 on that route.
              DL acquired a hub in BOS from Northeast, built it until 9/11 with Song and is now returning.

              Profitability is all that matters; the big 3 have all tried to build networks that attract the most business passengers.

              btw, perfect is subjective. It is more significant that Delta has been able to grow key hubs where other carriers have had hubs and I don’t think we have seen their last efforts at growing in other carrier hubs or strength markets.

              Nothing is permanent but Delta has made its list of initiatives clear and I doubt if they will walk away from what they have started – but, of course, let’s check back in a couple years on LAX, AUS, BOS, RDU, NYC and more….

            3. The fact that DL still doesn’t fly LAX-ORD should tell you they don’t have their priorities straight. They’ve been wasting time at SEA and BOS when they have a chance of lifetime to really build up their LAX operation during this pandemic and they are squandering it. AA can maintain its position in LAX by virtue of having a lot of partners. It’s visible in LAX POS. AA dominates that over DL and UA right now.

              DL should be focusing on the two largest markets in the country, but they are simply not doing so.

              At this point, DL is still down 30 to 35% in revenue vs 2 years ago. That’s a huge problem. Will DL still be an investor darling if its margins are only slightly better than AA & UA?

              DL has bought into this narrative that they have to be in certain overly competitive tech markets that other airlines have inherent advantages. Even with all its adds, it’s still behind AA in these markets. It has given up all its strength in those middle of country markets that it was dominating in.

            4. FC,
              you do realize that there are multiple markets in which Delta gets more local market than any carrier does in Chicago to LAX precisely because it is divided by so many carriers?
              Can you explain how Delta is now, according to the most DOT data (1Q2021), carrying the most local market revenue in the LGA-ORD market and they did so flying E175s – but have now upgraded to an A220-300 schedule – a 75% increase in capacity. May have changed but the last time I checked, Delta was flying more capacity in the ORD-LGA market than United and American is only slightly more than Delta.
              You actually should be thankful that Delta is NOT so far flying ORD-LAX given how quickly they have established themselves in the LGA-ORD market.

              but of course you and others are going to keep moving the target to try to argue that Delta is failing to be competitive while failing to note how much revenue – and how little presence American and United have in markets like ATL to LGA and LAX, which as much as you want to believe otherwise, are not exactly small markets.

              And Delta is still the #1 airline in JFK-LAX while IS STILL the largest local market by revenue in the US. Again, last time I checked

              none of which changes that Delta is going after Boston including more flying to the west coast which IS directly competitive with B6 as well as to Europe and Israel which an extension of DL’s presence in NYC.

            5. Tim
              You never cease to entertain with your random unrelated fact from a single quarter during a pandemic to try to prove a larger point that you can’t prove.

            6. Julie
              kinda like how ORD-LAX is related to anything in this week’s schedule announcement?
              At least CF gets a few more clicks with all of this random “if only they….”

    1. Please see the most recent DOT air travel consumer report which shows Delta’s domestic system on-time at 85%, American at 74% and JetBlue at 56%. For Boston, Delta was at 84%, American at 73%, and JetBlue at 66%.

      these are verifiable facts, not my opinion.

      My opinion is that AA will never benefit from B6′ market strength among high value customers until B6 fixes its on-time problem; they have consistently been 9 out of 10 US airlines.

      1. For the one year before pre-COVID, B6’s OTP at JFK was better than AA mainline. At BOS, they were about the same. If those AA ff was okay with AA’s operation then they will be okay with B6’s operation.

        Go to FT, AA ff in NYC/Boston are all asking questions/making comments about flying B6 through AA codeshares. There aren’t anymore of those people talking about changing their allegiance to DL. In fact, AA will probably pick up some B6 ff along the way, since AA’s program is better than Mosaic.

      2. Of course, The “Perfect Airline’s” statistics are helped by the fact that it has very large hubs in places other than the New York City metropolitan area. But of course, facts tend to get conveniently ignored or glossed over by commentators on airline blogs. As Mark Twain observed, “There are three kinds of lies – lies, damned lies, and statistics.” Truer words were rarely spoken. By the way, “never” is a pretty long time. I’m guessing (note that I’m simply guessing, not stating this as fact) that JetBlue’s regular customers are intelligent enough to understand the air traffic issues in the New York area.

        1. Desert – And to add to that, here are the full September A14 numbers for the most recent month, September, looking at Boston departures American: 90.81% Delta: 90.52% JetBlue: 84.66%

          And for flights arriving Boston Delta: 90.44% American: 86.54% JetBlue: 81.6%

          For departures from JFK/LGA American: 89.05% Delta: 87.76% JetBlue: 74.68%

          For arrivals at JFK/LGA Delta: 88.55% American: 86.67% JetBlue: 71.34%

          To quote a frequent commenter… “these are verifiable facts, not my opinion.”

          There’s no question JetBlue has a problem in New York, but that is not the case in Boston.

          1. It would be nice if Congress could get its act together and use some of the proposed $3.5trillion infrastructure money (which is likely to get reduced) to fund improved air traffic control. Full disclosure: I haven’t seen any reports if air traffic control improvements are part of any proposed legislation, so my facetiousness/sarcasm may be misplaced. LOL

  4. Noticed that AA LAX-SLC/ OMA disappeared during the fist few weeks of Dec. I suspect this was an error, at least for SLC. They were slowly loading E75 aircraft as replacement for the CR7’s, but the post Thanksgiving schedule seems wonky.

  5. Advanced Air? Never even heard of them.

    But then again I just learned about AHA! airlines starting service.

    Maybe a list of airlines you’ve never heard of is due……LOL

  6. Not much surprise that UA cut China. DL and AA as far as I know have already given up through the winter as well.

    I am however curious on how this might affect Olympics related transportation. Will Team USA (and others) then have to charter a US flight or GASP! Fly a Chinese airline to and from Beijing in February?

  7. I do wonder if there is an Asian route from BOS that DL could jump on. Yes, they share the Korean flight, but there are other destinations a well-placed A359 might be used on.

  8. AA is bringing back PHX-SJO in late December, but only for two weeks…womp womp….so much for late January trip we almost planned…

  9. Just commenting to say I appreciated the reference to the ridiculousness of GSO – Greensboro/High Point/Winston-Salem, NC.

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