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Delta drops new Orange County flight after slot loss

Delta Air Lines will end its new service to Orange County from New York in January, after losing one of its slots in the California airport's annual allocations.

The SkyTeam Alliance carrier will end six-times weekly service between New York John F Kennedy and Orange County's John Wayne airport on 5 January 2019, FlightGlobal schedules show and the airline confirms. The service on a Boeing 737-700 only began on 15 October.

"While disappointed with this outcome, Delta will continue to explore future opportunities to offer the service going forward," the Atlanta-based carrier says.

Slots at Orange County are awarded annually based on the number of seats carriers plan to fly to the airport, which local regulations cap at 10.8 million passengers annually. Delta was awarded 12 slots for 2019, down from 13 this year, airport commission documents from September show.

Southwest Airlines also lost a slot, receiving 17 instead of 18, while Alaska Airlines was denied a request for additional capacity at Orange County.

With Delta's exit from the JFK-Orange County market, United Airlines will be the only carrier flying between the New York City area via Newark Liberty and the Southern California airport, schedules show.

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