Delta and United continue to spar over Haneda slot decision

Washington DC
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Delta Air Lines and United Airlines continue to spar over a slot pair at Tokyo Haneda, following a US Department of Transportation (DOT) decision that Delta be able to move the gateway to Seattle.

The regulator tentatively granted Atlanta-based Delta's request to shift the gateway of its flight between Detroit and Haneda to Seattle in November. United objected to the decision arguing for its proposed flight between San Francisco and Haneda and requesting back-up authority in the event that the SkyTeam alliance member did not begin service within 90 days.

Delta says United's objection has "no merit" and that the DOT should reject its application for back-up authority, in a regulatory filing on 5 December.

The airline cites the DOT's previous statements that it would reallocate a slot pair at Haneda if an airline failed to operate it rather than specify a back-up carrier, in the filing.

Chicago-based United continues to argue for back-up authority for the slot pair if it is not awarded the pair for its own San Francisco flight, in a separate regulatory filing. It also objects to American Airlines request for gateway flexibility for all of the Haneda slot pairs as part of the decision.

Fort Worth-based American did not object to the tentative decision but requested gateway flexibility for all of the slot pairs. The Oneworld alliance member had requested the pair for a flight between Los Angeles and Haneda.

Hawaiian Airlines did not object to the decision. It had requested the slots for a Kona, Hawaii, to Haneda flight.

US airlines are allowed four slot pairs at Haneda under the 2010 US and Japan open skies agreement. American flies New York John F. Kennedy (JFK) to Haneda, Delta Detroit and Los Angeles to Haneda, and Hawaiian Honolulu to Haneda.