The Atlantic Update – Wednesday 27 November 2019

A weekly bulletin on transatlantic travel, published every Wednesday at 06:00 GMT.

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Virgin Atlantic, Air France KLM and Delta
Virgin Atlantic, Air France KLM and Delta

Hello and welcome to the The Atlantic Update providing a weekly bulletin on developments on transatlantic travel between Europe and North America. The Atlantic Update is published every Wednesday morning at 06:00 GMT.

Air France-KLM, Delta & Virgin Atlantic Joint-Venture Approval

The US Department of Transportation has finally given approval for Delta to combine its two transatlantic joint-ventures with Air France-KLM and Virgin Atlantic into one.

In spite of fierce lobbying by JetBlue no regulatory concessions have been demanded as condition of the new joint-venture.

No timescale has been given by the airlines for the formal launch of the combined joint-venture but a logical date would be the start of the summer 2020 season at the end of March 2020.

This is likely to presage further co-operation between Air France-KLM and Virgin Atlantic. This is particularly in the areas of frequent flyer programmes and other long-haul routes outside of North America, where Air France-KLM has significantly greater coverage than Virgin Atlantic.

Also in a largely symbolic, but still historically significant, Virgin Group will give up control of Virgin Atlantic (something Sir Richard Branson once said he would never do) by selling a 31% stake to Virgin Atlantic.

On a related matter, Aer Lingus is still awaiting approval to join the AA/BA joint-venture.

Staying with Aer Lingus, the Canadian Transportation Agency has granted approval for ASL Airlines to operate a scheduled service on behalf of Aer Lingus between 1 and 30 January 2020. This is somewhat curious as Aer Lingus does not currently fly to Canada.

American Airlines Summer Schedule

American Airlines has announced a number of new domestic routes for the summer 2020 season.

Particularly of note for Oneworld transatlantic flyers are new Saturday seasonal services from Philadelphia to Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts and from Charlotte to Martha’s Vineyard. Full details are available at aa.com

“WORLD WAY: The City of LAX”

Film maker Chris Pritchard has made an exceptionally well produced and edited four minute time lapse video of Los Angeles International airport, which can be both immensely frustrating but still captivating.

The film was produced over three years with the assistance of the airport and you can read more about the film on Chris Pritchard’s blog.

Late post publication updates:

[Reserved for updates throughout the day]

Norwegian has advised it is to end transatlantic flights from Copenhagen and Stockholm to the US. Transatlantic flights from Oslo will continue. (Norwegian – In Danish)

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