Hello and welcome to the The Atlantic Update providing a weekly bulletin on developments on transatlantic travel between Europe and North America.
This is the last edition of The Atlantic Update for 2019. It will return at 06:00 GMT on Wednesday 15 January 2020.
Here’s what to expect from the two main transatlantic joint businesses in London in 2020:
American Airlines & BA
American Airlines & BA will mark 10 years of their transatlantic joint business in early 2020.
In terms of routes, American Airlines will reinstate a daily flight from London Heathrow to Boston from Sunday 29 March 2020.
There has been surprisingly little news from BA as far as its long-haul plans are concerned for 2020.
The commitments American and BA gave to EU & US regulators to secure regulatory approval for the joint business will expire in 2020. The UK Competition & Markets Authority (CMA) has opened an investigation in to the joint-venture in anticipation of the UK’s departure from the European Union. This appears to be taking considerably longer than was first anticipated.
American & BA have the benefit of having already secured regulatory approval for their joint business. They can also say with some justification that it has helped expand considerably London’s transatlantic route network. However, given the tough approach the CMA has adopted in other cases, further concessions for regulators can not be ruled out.
Regulatory approval for Aer Lingus to join the joint business is also still forthcoming.
Delta & Virgin Atlantic
Delta and Virgin Atlantic will form a combined Europe-North America transatlantic joint-venture with Air France-KLM in early 2020.
Delta will also return to London Gatwick flying to Boston from Friday 22 May 2020 and Virgin Atlantic will reinstate Gatwick – New York JFK from Thursday 21 May 2020..
Delta will continue to roll out its refurbished Boeing 767-400 aircraft to transatlantic routes from Heathrow such as Detroit, Minneapolis and Portland. Virgin Atlantic will also add its new Airbus A350-1000 aircraft to New York JFK and Los Angeles.
Late post publication updates:
[Reserved for updates throughout the day]