American Airlines Pulling Out Of Australia, At Least Until End Of October

With Australia reducing the number of international passengers allowed to enter the country each day in half, American is running many of its Los Angeles – Sydney flights as cargo-only until August 31, while the return Sydney – Los Angeles flight carriers both cargo and passengers. On days where American has an allocation of allowed passenger arrivals, they’re carrying passengers to Australia.

For July 14 – August 31, the Australian arrivals cap has been cut in half with only 456 people allowed into the country each day (215 of those are permitted to arrive in Sydney). That’s for all airlines.

After this period American Airlines will exit the Australian passenger market for two months, although of course this suspension of service could be extended based on facts on the ground in Australia.

Australia largely managed to contain the virus during the pandemic but has flubbed its vaccination efforts, and as a result the population of the country remains mostly vulnerable to infection – as the infectiousness of the virus has grown. It’s hoped that vaccinations will speed in earnest come the end of 2021, although this too could wind up delayed. The number of reported Covid-19 infections in Australia has been growing for the past several weeks off of a very low base, and the Sydney area especially has been under a lock down.

American’s decision to pull of Australia is not due to crew revolting over tipping being forbidden while they’re in the country.

(HT: @xJonNYC)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I think the fact that the capital is canberra, far from sydney and melbourne is a reason why australians are not burning down their parliament
    Their government is an absolute joke

  2. I have a SYD-LAX award ticket for Feb. Hope it doesn’t get cancelled prematurely before a definitive decision is made on what will happen in Feb.

  3. American argued as part of its joint venture application that it did poorly to Australia and needed Qantas to help its position in the S. Pacific. Since QF is not operating most of its international network, AA does not get the help it argued for.
    The gain from serving Australia now is not the passenger market but cargo capacity is also very low relative to pre-covid levels so Delta and United are apparently doing well on cargo even with a very small handful of passengers that are paying much higher fares than pre-pandemic.

  4. Why doesn’t Australia just require vaccinations for those coming in. They are not changing their problem by limiting people. They need to require vaccines instead

  5. Why doesn’t Australia just require vaccinations for those coming in. They are not changing their problem by limiting people.

  6. How sad and avoidable all this really is. America comes and goes when it comes to Australia. I’m not surprised. I lived in Melbourne for four year. Thank God it was many years ago. Very few in Australia are vaccinated – last I read it was 6% but it may be more. Their government(s) did not get on the Vaccine band-wagon – similar to Canada. At least they closed their borders. That’s why they like Canada believed in LOCK DOWNS. Their populations are compliant unlike Americans – (Thank God). Both countries were expecting the GLOBAL union to save and protect them. How well did that work out? Unlike the USA and Canada , they – OZ have a media that is pointing the finger of the pandemic in the direction of the culprit and it’s a particular country’s government not Trump.

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