Posts Tagged ‘American Eagle’

Northeast Ohio Air Service Watch: United Route Restructuring Hits Cleveland, Akron-Canton Airports

January 18, 2020

Changes are coming to airline service in Northeast Ohio including a restructuring of United Airlines service at Cleveland Hopkins and Akron-Canton airports.

Making headlines this week was the announcement that United will cease flying from Hopkins Airport to New York’s LaGuardia Airport and Reagan Washington National Airport on March 29.

Instead the carrier will boost capacity on flights between Cleveland and Washington Dulles and Newark Liberty airports.

A United spokesman told The Plain Dealer there would be no net decrease in total seats to the New York City and Washington areas, which suggests that United may replace some regional jets now flying those routes with larger aircraft and/or increase the number of flights.

The spokesman also said there would be an increase in premium seats available to travelers flying to Newark and Dulles from Cleveland.

A similar change is coming to Akron-Canton on May 8 when United launches four daily non-stop flights to Dulles.

At the same time it will drop its existing twice daily flights between Newark and Akron-Canton.

In the past two years United has been bolstering its service from Dulles Airport by adding destinations and shifting some connecting flight to Dulles from its Newark hub.

United plans to launch a shuttle service between Reagan National and Newark and some observers think the ending of service from Cleveland to Reagan National is being done to give some of those Washington landing slots to the shuttle operation.

United will offer after late March 12 non-stop destinations from Cleveland. As recently as 2014 it flew to 59 airports from Hopkins.

The Akron-Canton flights to Dulles will operate with regional jet equipment under the United Express brand.

All of United’s flights between Hopkins and Reagan National and LaGuardia are operated with regional jets under the United Express brand.

American and Delta also fly between Cleveland and LaGuardia with regional jet equipment under the American Eagle and Delta Connect brands respectively.

American Eagle also has service between Cleveland and Reagan National.

Other developments affecting air service in Northeast Ohio include the assignment of new 50-seat regional jet aircraft by United Express to its route between Akron-Canton and Chicago O’Hare Airport.

The Bombardier CRJ-500 jets have more legroom and increased storage space.

United said the CRJ-550 is the only regional jet with first-class seating and such amenities as space for every passenger to bring a roller bag on board and a self-serve refreshment center for first class passengers featuring snacks and beverages.

The aircraft also has Wi-Fi service in flight. CRJ-550 aircraft feature 10 first-class, 20 economy-plus and 20 regular economy seats.

A CRJ-550 is now being used on one to two of the four daily roundtrips between O’Hare and Akron-Canton. By late spring all four flights will feature CRJ-550 equipment.

United also flies the CRJ-550 on routes linking Chicago with Cincinnati and Columbus, and between the two Ohio cities and Newark.

Also at Akron-Canton, Delta earlier this month began operating mainline jets on two of its three daily flights to Atlanta.

A late morning flight to Akron-Canton uses a Boeing 717 jet while the late night flight uses a 737. The mid-day flight uses a regional jet.

During the Christmas travel season all of the flights between Akron-Canton and Atlanta had been covered by regional jets.

Spirit Airlines late last year resumed seasonal service between Akron-Canton and Tampa and Fort Myers, Florida.

Those flights, as well as Spirit’s year-around service to Orlando, do not operate daily and use Airbus 319 jets.

Hopkins Airport will see the addition of a new carrier on May 20 when Sun Country Airlines begins flying between Cleveland and Minneapolis-St. Paul.

JetBlue has announced it will increase its service between Cleveland and Boston at an unspecified date in 2020.

United plans to add a weekend flight between Cleveland and Tampa in the spring.

CAK Service to Increase This Month

June 1, 2018

Akron-Canton Airport will get a modest boost in flights next month when American Airlines increases the number of daily flights it offers to Chicago.

Starting June 7, American will increase to three a day its flights from Akron-Canton to O’Hare International Airport.

That expansion will precede by a day the planned launch of new service by United Airlines between Akron-Canton and Houston.

Both carriers offer flights under their respective regional airline brands using regional jet equipment.

American Eagle flights to O’Hare will depart at 5:59 a.m., 12:46 p.m., and 3:14 p.m. The current flights depart at 6 a.m. and 2:36 p.m.

The carrier said that seat capacity on its flights from Akron-Canton to O’Hare and other locations will grow by 15 percent in July.

American Airlines also flies from Akron-Canton to Charlotte, North Carolina; Philadelphia, New York (LaGuardia), and Washington (Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport).

American Airlines will operate 82 flights a week from Akron-Canton, the most flights offered by any carrier at the airport.

The United Express flight to Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport. Departure will depart at 7 a.m. and return at 10:12 p.m.

United also flies from Akron-Canton to O’Hare and Newark Liberty International Airport.

Airline Turbulence Continues at Akron-Canton

September 24, 2016

The churn of airline service at Akron-Canton Airport continued this week with the news that Allegiant Air will leave the airport early next year and that Spirit Airlines will increase the number of destinations that it plans to serve from CAK.

Akron-Canton AirportAkron-Canton will also see an increase in service by American Eagle in early October.

Allegiant, which began service to Akron-Canton in spring 2015, plans to move it flights from CAK to Cleveland Hopkins International Airport.

The discount carrier, which specializes in selling travel packages as well as air fares, will cease serving Akron-Canton on Feb. 15.

For its part, Spirit plans to begin service at Akron-Canton on Nov. 10, serving many of the same destinations that Allegiant now serves.

From Akron-Canton, Allegiant serves St. Petersburg, Florida; Punta Gorda, Florida; Orlando (Sanford); Fort Lauderdale, Florida; Myrtle Beach, South Carolina; and Savannah, Georgia.

Many of those destinations are seasonal and none are served daily.

Allegiant said it would link Cleveland with all of those destinations as well as launch routes between Cleveland and Jacksonville, Florida.; Austin, Texas; New Orleans; and Phoenix.

Spirit will offer service from Akron-Canton to Orlando International Airport and to Fort Lauderdale. Allegiant’s Orlando flights actually go to Sanford.

Spirit also plans to provide winter seasonal service several times a week to Tampa and Fort Myers, Florida. Summer seasonal service to Myrtle Beach will begin next April 27.

This week Spirit announced that it will begin flying between Akron-Canton and Las Vegas on April 27, providing the first service between those cities since Southwest Airlines ended its flights on the route earlier this year.

American Eagle plans to institute twice daily service on Oct. 6 between Akron-Canton and Chicago O’Hare International Airport, and to increase its service between Akron-Canton and New York LaGuardia Airport to twice daily.

United Express currently flies between Akron and O’Hare.

Airport officials said Allegiant told them its flights to Akron-Canton had performed well.

But Allegiant chief operating officer and senior vice president of planning Jude Bricker told attendees of the International Aviation Forecast Summit this month that service between smaller airports and destination cities such as Orlando and Las Vegas has just about played itself out.

Bricker said Allegiant did well in those markets, saying the carrier now has 350 served markets in 109 cities.

“We serve more cities than Southwest Airlines, though we’re much thinner on peak days,” he said.

Allegiant recently began service to Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport and plans to begin serving Newark Liberty International Airport.

In Ohio, Allegiant has service to Columbus, Toledo, Youngstown, Dayton and Cincinnati. It has never served Cleveland directly.

Akron-Canton Airport President and Chief Executive Officer Rick McQueen said Allegiant had an 88 percent load factor at CAK.

“It’s always disappointing to lose air service,” he said. “It’s a very precious commodity to the community. The Akron and Canton community really supported that service.”

Within the past year, Akron-Canton has lost service provided by Southwest Airlines. At one time, Southwest flew to Atlanta, Chicago Midway, LaGuardia, Washington Reagan National, Denver, Las Vegas and Orlando.

Today, Southwest continues to fly to Atlanta three times a day and has Saturday-only service to Orlando.

In a statement, Bricker said moving Allegiant’s flights to Cleveland “will allow Allegiant to have a stronger presence in Northeast Ohio and allow us to offer our low fares and convenient travel to even more travelers.”

Spirit also serves Cleveland and although it has said it expects to do well in Cleveland and Akron-Canton, there has been speculation that some Cleveland flights might migrate to Akron-Canton if the load factors out of Cleveland drop off.

Southwest Plans More Flight Cuts at CAK

November 7, 2015

Just as Akron-Canton Airport was welcoming two new routes Southwest Airlines said it would end service to all but one destination next spring.

Starting next April 12, Southwest will cease flying from Akron-Canton to Orlando, Tampa and Las Vegas. Southwest will continue to fly between CAK and Atlanta.

“While this news is disappointing for us, we are glad that Southwest will continue to provide access to its low-fares and exceptional customer service via Atlanta,” said Rick McQueen, president and CEO at Akron-Canton, in a news release.

The news release noted that passengers can fly from Atlanta to 100 cities in the Southwest Airlines network. Southwest also said it would increase the number of flights between CAK and Atlanta from two to three.

Earlier this year, Southwest ended service between Akron-Canton and New York, Washington, Denver and Boston.

The pending end of service to Las Vegas is puzzling because the route had not yet started when the airlines said it was ending it. Southwest will have operated the CAK-Las Vegas route for a mere five months.

On the other hand, American Eagle on Nov. 5 launched daily non-stop service between CAK and New York’s LaGuardia airport, a route that Southwest had ended in early November.

Allegiant Air also launched new service between Akron-Canton and Punta Gorda Airport near Fort Myers, Florida. Southwest offers seasonal non-stop service between CAK and Fort Myers and those flights will, presumably, end for good next spring, too.

United Express began service in late October between Akron-Canton and Newark Liberty International Airport. American Eagle and United Express are regional affiliates of American Airlines and United Airlines respectively.

Punta Gorda is Allegiant’s fifth destination from Akron-Canton, which the low fare airline began serving last May. None of Allegiants flights from CAK operate daily and most of them are seasonal.

Kristie Van Auken, the airport’s senior vice president, said officials are going to push to get another airline to offer service to Orlando, a route that CAK has had for 20 years.

“Our Florida flights are always very full,” she said. “It would be hard to argue that Florida is not a successful market from any Ohio airport.”

Southwest flies two flights a day to Orlando, a service that it inherited when it acquired AirTran in 2014.

“We’re not leaving Akron-Canton,” said Southwest spokesman Dan Landson. “This is really about connecting our customers to our gateways, so we can get them to more places.”

Southwest is also reducing flights from Dayton and two Michigan airports, Grand Rapids and Flint.

Aviation consultant Robert Mann said that smaller airports such as Dayton and Akron are close to larger airports that may have better service.

“What Southwest has been attempting to do is utilize its aircraft in the highest and best way possible,” said Mann, owner of R.W. Mann & Co. “It wouldn’t surprise me if Southwest is reassessing how its assets are performing – and reallocating those assets.”

Even larger airports, though, are not immune to route rationalization.

Frontier Airliners, which once flew between Akron-Canton and Denver before pulling up stakes and moving those flights to Cleveland-Hopkins International Airport, is ending service from Cleveland to Denver and Atlanta in early January.

The airlines said it would reinstate service to Denver at an unspecified date but for the time being it is more focused on flights to warm weather destinations.

A Frontier spokesman said no decision has been made on whether Frontier would resume serving Atlanta from Cleveland.

The flight cuts will reduce to five the destinations that Frontier serves from Cleveland.

Frontier won’t be flying this winter from Cleveland to Fort Lauderdale or Phoenix, which it served last year, but has launched new service between Cleveland and Cancun, Mexico.

The carrier also added an extra daily flight between Cleveland and Orlando this fall, using new 230-passenger Airbus 321 jets. Frontier also flies from Cleveland to Fort Myers, Tampa and Las Vegas.

United and Southwest fly nonstop between Cleveland and Denver, and Delta Airlines and Spirit Airlines fly non-stop from Cleveland to Atlanta.