In international route developments, Air China gets a green light for its planned San Jose service; Virgin Atlantic goes all-787 at San Francisco; Atlanta loses a European route and Philadelphia gains one; Newark gets new service to Africa; American adds two markets from Philadelphia and drops two from Miami.
The U.S. Government has given its approval for new Air China service between San Jose and Shanghai Pudong. The carrier plans to fly the route three days a week starting June 16 with a two-class, 237-seat Airbus A330-200. It will be San Jose’s second China route following Hainan Airlines’ inauguration of San Jose-Beijing service last year.
At San Francisco International, meanwhile, the route-watching site Airlineroute.net reports that Virgin Atlantic plans to transition to all-Dreamliner service later this year. It said that starting September 4, Virgin Atlantic will replace the aging A340-600 currently operating one of its two London flights (VS019/020) with a 787-9; the other flight already uses a Dreamliner.
Although the troubles at Brussels Airport are settling down, it looks like passenger demand from the U.S. took a big hit. Delta has resumed its New York JFK-Brussels flights, but said it has decided to suspend the resumption of Atlanta-Brussels service until March 2017. Meanwhile, United Airlines has ditched plans to add a second daily Newark-Brussels flight that had been due to begin on May 5, according to Airlineroute.net.
Newark will get a new route to Africa, however. Ethiopian Airlines reportedly plans to shift its three weekly New York flights from JFK Airport to Newark, starting July 3 and lasting at least through October. Ethiopian’s 787-8 flights to Addis Ababa operate via a stop in the West African capital of Lome, Togo.
At its Philadelphia International hub, American Airlines plans a May 6 revival of seasonal flights to Athens. The daily service will use an A330-300 with 27 business class seats and 259 in economy. Also at PHL, American has resumed daily flights to Bermuda. At its Latin American hub in Miami, however, American reportedly plans to scale back service to Brazil by eliminating Miami-Recife and Miami-Salvador de Bahia flights effective May 3 and 4 respectively.
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