American Airlines is adjusting its network plans over the
next year to account for a "prolonged downturn in international travel",
with summer 2021 long-haul capacity scheduled to be 25 per cent lower than it
was in 2019.
The plans include ending several routes, particularly
shifting away some long-haul international service from Los Angeles
International airport to "concentrate on the hub's domestic strength",
according to American. It no longer will fly from Los Angeles to Hong Kong,
Buenos Aires, São Paulo, Beijing and Shanghai. Ending the Shanghai service is
contingent on approval to move the Shanghai service to Seattle, where American
also still intends to launch service to Bangalore and London next year in
conjunction with its new partnership with Alaska Airlines.
Other routes that American will terminate include service
from Charlotte to each Barcelona, Rome and Paris; Dallas-Fort Worth to Munich;
Miami to both Brasilia and Milan; and Philadelphia to each Berlin, Budapest and
Dubrovnik. Additionally, American is cancelling plans to launch service between
Chicago and each Budapest, Prague and Krakow and between Philadelphia and
With the service changes in Los Angeles, American will make
Dallas-Fort Worth its major transpacific hub. Miami will remain the main hub
for the Caribbean, Central and South America, while Philadelphia will be the
main hub for travel to Europe, once transatlantic restrictions are eased.
With its international network reduced, American plans to
"further integrate into our partners' hubs" for connectivity,
according to chief revenue officer Vasu Raja. It plans, for example, to resume
its full schedule to London Heathrow by next year, where it will work with
partner British Airways for further connectivity.
"Covid-19 has forced us to re-evaluate our
network," Raja said in a statement. "American will have a significantly
smaller international network in the year ahead, but we are using this
opportunity to hit reset and create a network using the strength of our
strategic hubs that we can build on, be profitable on and grow on in this new