American extends schedule cuts into November

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American Airlines will cut about 1% of its flight schedule through the first half of November, following weeks of operational difficulties.

The Fort Worth-based Oneworld carrier says that it needs the additional time to "ensure the operation returns to a more normal pattern", in an employee memo today.

"We are encouraged by the improvements we are seeing in some of the performance metrics we use to measure our operation," says American in the memo. "However, overall, we are not yet back to the levels our customers deserve and expect from American."

The airline has cut between 1% and 2% of its schedule since mid-September following an uptick in cancellations and maintenance issues, which included rows of seats coming loose in-flight on two of its Boeing 757-200s and resulted in the temporary removal form service of 48 of the type.

American says that the schedule cuts will not affect Thanksgiving travel, which includes the busiest annual travel day in the USA.

The airline's on-time performance improved to about 66% for the week beginning 30 September as of 6 October, according to FlightStats.com. It was as low as 48% during the middle of September.