As part of the American and US Airways settlement with the Department of Justice which allowed the two airlines to merge, the new carrier was required to divest itself of 52 “slot pairs” at Washington National airport.
Basically, US Airways wasn’t going to be allowed to get any bigger at National than it was already. So they’re giving up takeoffs and landings the size of the existing American Airlines operation there.
Washington National has slot controls, limitations on the number of flights that can operate there. Though they had to give up 52 takeoffs and landings, it’s actually just 44 flights since American was already leasing out some of their slots.
While the required slot sales aren’t final, the result of some communities losing service. We don’t have details of all of the schedule changes that will come from giving up slots at Washington National (such as flight reductions to cities that will retain service), but American announced the cities that the combined airline would no longer provide daily, year-round service to:
- Augusta, Ga.
- Detroit, Mich.
- Fayetteville, N.C.
- Fort Walton Beach, Fla.
- Islip, N.Y.
- Jacksonville, N.C.
- Little Rock, Ark.
- Minneapolis, Minn.
- Myrtle Beach, S.C.
- Nassau, Bahamas
- Omaha, Neb.
- Pensacola, Fla.
- San Diego, Calif.
- Savannah, Ga.
- Tallahassee, Fla.
- Wilmington, N.C.
It’s probably not fair to include San Diego on this list. They’ll be eliminating non-stop service there, to be sure. They are limited in the number of flights they can fly beyond the 1250 mile ‘perimeter’ from the airport. And they expect to move the San Diego flight to Los Angeles instead (giving them a second daily non-stop to L.A.).
A much smaller issue, the airline was forced to give up slots at New York’s LaGuardia as well. They’ll be ending non-stop service from there to Atlanta, Cleveland and Minneapolis. But they’ll be shifting other flying out of the airport to allow them to launch new service from New York LaGuardia to
Charlottesville, Little Rock, Roanoke, Dayton, Louisville, Wilmington,
Greensboro, Norfolk, Knoxville, and Richmond.