Czech Airlines axes New York, pulls A310s from schedule

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Czech Airlines is to withdraw its long-haul fleet, a pair of Airbus A310s, from scheduled service during the winter, axing its route to New York in the process.

The carrier will also close, or cut frequencies, on European routes with poor demand. SkyTeam partner Delta Air Lines will maintain the link between Prague and New York.

Czech Airlines president Radomir Lasak says the carrier is taking "drastic" measures, having assumed a double-digit fall in passenger numbers over the vital summer period.

"In spite of the emotions that will accompany the unpopular optimising steps, we have to take those steps," he says. "The companies that remain on the market will not be those that are the most beautiful, largest and strongest, but those that are able to adapt the best and the fastest."

Czech Airlines' two long-haul aircraft, both A310-300s, will not be used on scheduled services but deployed for charter operations. The carrier has around 50 aircraft and says it will reduce its fleet by 10% for the winter.