United Airlines announced today that it will end all flights from New York’s JFK Airport, and relocate its premium transcontinental p.s.® flights to its Newark International hub.
According to United, “beginning October 25, all regularly scheduled Newark–Los Angeles and Newark–San Francisco flights will offer:
- flat-bed seats in the United BusinessFirst cabin;
- premium in-flight service;
- more extra-legroom Economy Plus seats than any other carrier; and
- modern interiors with in-flight Wi-Fi and personal on-demand entertainment with individual seatback monitors and power ports for customers in every row.”
To support the expanded services, United will reallocate a number of 757s from trans-Atlantic markets and replace that flying with 767s. Further, as part of the drawdown of services at JFK, United has reached an agreement with Delta Air Lines to sell its slots there, while purchasing a number of slots at EWR from Delta. These transactions are subject to government approval.
United has become a bit player at JFK, and will capitalize on its strengths in the New York market with this move while Delta will pick up additional slots at its growing JFK hub. There is a bit of symbolism here for the airline enthusiast in me. JFK is thought of as America’s gateway to the world, and one of the Nation’s largest airlines will no longer fly there. In the end, United is doing exactly what I would do if I were running the airline. Now if they could just get on with fixing the other 99 percent of the airline they might be on to something.
-MJ, June 16, 2015