Delta Air Lines faces “serious challenges” competing against American Airlines (AA) on US–Brazil routes, a situation, which will only become worse following Americans merger with US Airways, the carrier says.
Delta says it must be awarded more frequencies between the two countries to readdress the balance, pointing out that American already has more than 50% of frequencies on routes between the US and Brazil. The airline is trying to convince the Department of Transportation (DoT) to award it an additional 14 frequencies, seven between Atlanta and São Paulo and seven between New York JFK, that become available in October 2013 under a new air transport agreement signed with Brazil. The airline also requests an additional seven slots that become available in 2014 for services between Detroit and Sao Paulo. Delta said the award in its favour was in the public interest and could allow it to achieve a “level the playing field against American” and “achieve parity” with United. In its submission to the DoT yesterday (March 4), Delta also pointed out that the recent announcement of a merger between US Airways and American could have a further negative impact on the competitiveness of the market. Under a 2010 slot swap agreement, Delta agreed to give up seven weekly at Reagan National in a deal Delta said was intended to help US Airways enter the São Paulo market. With the US/AA merger that deal now further erodes Delta’s market position in relation to its competitors, Delta argues. Should its proposal be successful Delta said it would look to begin operating additional frequencies between Atlanta–São Paulo begin from December 2013 utilising a B767-300ER equipped with 35 Business, 32 Economy Comfort and 143 Economy class seats on the route. American currently operates services to Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo and other Brazilian cities from its hubs in Miami, New York JFK and Dallas/Fort Worth, while Delta operates Brazil services from Detroit Wayne, JFK and Atlanta. Earlier this week, American Airlines made its own submission for the additional frequencies. It said it would use these frequencies to add one new daily round trip service between Sao Paulo and Los Angeles in 2013 and Chicago in 2014. Source: routenews, Oliver Clark
Gravity always wins!