• American Airlines Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner From Above

    American Airlines

    IATA/ICAO Code:
    AA/AAL

    Airline Type:
    Full Service Carrier

    Hub(s):
    Charlotte Douglas International Airport, Chicago O’Hare International Airport, Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, Los Angeles International Airport, Miami International Airport, New York JFK Airport, LaGuardia Airport, Philadelphia International Airport, Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport

    Year Founded:
    1926

    Alliance:
    oneworld

    CEO:
    Robert Isom

    Country:
    United States

  • JetBlue Airways Airbus A321-200

    JetBlue

    IATA/ICAO Code:
    B6/JBA

    Hub(s):
    Boston Logan International Airport, Los Angeles International Airport, New York JFK Airport, Orlando International Airport

    Year Founded:
    2000

    CEO:
    Robin Hayes

    Country:
    United States

The Department of Transportation (DOT) approved the application of American Airlines and JetBlue to increase their weekly number of commercial services between the United States and Cuba. Both companies are now able to offer up to 14 weekly additional flights to the Caribbean country.

Increasing connectivity

Last month, both American Airlines and JetBlue filed letters to the DOT requesting an increase of service to Cuba, with each carrier ultimately proposing that the Department allocate 13 weekly frequencies to American and one Saturday-only frequency to JetBlue.

On Monday, the DOT decided to grant the carriers’ requests. Specifically, the Department allocated American 13 weekly frequencies for its proposed twice-daily additional round-trip service (except once on Saturdays) between Miami International Airport (MIA) and Havana International Airport (HAV). The DOT also allocated JetBlue one Saturday-only frequency for its proposed Fort Lauderdale-Havana round-trip additional service.

As of September 2022, there are 13 weekly flights between the United States and Cuba, operated by three airlines (American, JetBlue, and Southwest). All these commercial services are bound to Havana. American already operates six daily flights from Miami to the Cuban capital city. JetBlue operates three daily services (except on Saturday, when it only has one flight) from Fort Lauderdale and one weekly flight from New York JFK Airport on Saturdays. Finally, Southwest operates three daily flights from Fort Lauderdale to Havana and eight weekly services from Tampa.

A JetBlue Airways Airbus A321-271NX registration N2038J

American Airlines and JetBlue received authorization to offer up to 14 weekly additional flights to Cuba. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying.

More flights to Cuba

Prior to Donald Trump’s term in office, the US carriers held a major expansion of services to Cuba. For instance, in September 2017 (Trump was already president), there were 173 weekly flights from the United States to Cuba. Six US carriers operated services to six Cuban cities (Cienfuegos, Camagüey, Havana, Holguin, Santa Clara, and Varadero).

In 2017, American Airlines operated 70 weekly flights to the Caribbean island, followed by JetBlue with 48, Southwest with 21, Delta Air Lines with 19, United Airlines with eight, and Alaska Airlines with seven.

After a long hiatus due to new sanctions on the Cuban regime by the then-led Trump presidency, the US carriers are now looking to increase their connectivity to Cuba once more.

In July, the US DOT gave the green light for American to resume flights to several airports in Cuba. Services will launch in early November 2022 and complement the airline’s current schedule to Havana.

An American Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 8 registration N310RF

American Airlines expects to operate up to 84 weekly flights to Cuba by November. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying. 

How will the US-Cuba connectivity look in November

Not only American plans to increase its connectivity to Cuba. By November, it is expected there will be up to 21 weekly flights between both countries, according to data provided by Cirium. These are the routes offered:

  1. American Airlines: flights from Miami to Camagüey (CMW), Havana (HAV), Holguín (HOG), Santiago de Cuba (SCU), Santa Clara (SNU), and Varadero (VRA). 84 weekly flights.
  2. JetBlue: flights to Havana from Fort Lauderdale (FLL) and New York (JFK). 20 weekly flights.
  3. United Airlines: flights to Havana from Newark (EWR) and Houston (IAH). 14 weekly flights.
  4. Southwest: flights to Havana from Fort Lauderdale and Tampa. 29 weekly flights.

Are you excited about the increase in commercial services between the United States and Cuba? Let us know in the comments below.

Source: simpleflying.com

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