FORT WORTH, Texas, Jan. 5, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- American Airlines today formally submitted an application to the United States Department of Transportation (DOT) proposing to operate daily, year-round, nonstop service between Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and Tokyo's Haneda Airport (HND). Per the U.S.-Japan bilateral agreement, U.S. airlines may only operate a total of four daily round-trip flights at Haneda Airport. Currently that service is provided by Delta Air Lines from Los Angeles and Seattle, Hawaiian Airlines from Honolulu, and United Airlines from San Francisco. American's application seeks to transfer an existing route authority from Seattle, and would provide new service to Haneda from American's hub in Los Angeles.
"With only four authorized daily flights for U.S. airlines between Haneda and the United States, it is imperative that American be allowed to compete," said American's President Scott Kirby. "We are the only U.S. global network carrier without the authority to operate our own aircraft at Haneda. American's proposed Los Angeles-Haneda service will increase competition in the Haneda market and make the most of underutilized operating rights by giving millions of consumers and shippers a new, viable travel option to Haneda that they don't have today."
In December, the DOT instituted a carrier-selection proceeding to determine whether current service between Seattle and Haneda should be reallocated to another airline. Citing underutilization of a scarce resource, American seeks a reallocation of the Haneda authority. The airline intends to fly it year-round with daily service from Los Angeles. American's application is in response to the DOT's decision to consider the best allocation of the slots.
"On behalf of American's 14,000 pilots, we look forward to competing on this important route," said Capt. Keith Wilson, President of the Allied Pilots Association. "Asia presents the next frontier for the world's largest carrier, and our pilots stand ready to compete with nearly 200 daily departures from LAX, flying the youngest fleet of the U.S. global network carriers."
"On behalf of 25,000 flight attendants at American, we fully support our airline's effort to operate from LAX to Haneda," said APFA National President Laura Glading. "American's product, in particular the inflight service provided by our world-class flight attendants, will be a very attractive option for customers traveling between Haneda and the West Coast."
American would provide important consumer and competitive benefits in the Haneda market, by competing head-to-head with other carriers on the Los Angeles-Haneda route and bringing the first-ever oneworld service to the LAX-HND market to compete with other alliances. American's proposal would also enhance the overall competition for service between the U.S. and Tokyo. Los Angeles is the largest continental U.S. gateway to Tokyo and demand in the Los Angeles-Tokyo market is almost five times larger than Seattle-Tokyo.
American is the leading airline in Los Angeles and has a rich history as Southern California's premier carrier, including 80 years of serving Los Angeles. American has nearly 200 daily departures at LAX, the only three-class transcontinental service, and unrivaled customer service on the ground and in the air.
American is in the midst of more than $2 billion in planned improvements to give customers a superior travel experience around the world. These capital investments include fully lie-flat seats; international Wi-Fi; more in-flight entertainment options; a new, modern design for Admirals Club lounges worldwide; and an upgraded assortment of complimentary healthy food, cocktails and more.
American will operate its proposed LAX-HND service with a Boeing 777-200 aircraft. The airline is retrofitting all 47 of its 777-200s to refresh the cabins and enhance the premium experience on international flights. The retrofitted 777-200 features a Business Class product designed especially for American Airlines customers, with a fully lie-flat seat, direct aisle access and a private flying experience. The plane has a modern interior – including a walk-up bar – with unique lighting, a dramatic archway and a spacious look. It also has Main Cabin Extra and all Main Cabin seats have in-seat entertainment systems.
American is encouraging customers and employees to voice their support of its proposal to operate Los Angeles-Haneda service by visiting aa.com/LetAAFlyHaneda and tweeting using the hashtag #LetAAFlyHaneda.
About American Airlines Group
American Airlines Group (NASDAQ: AAL) is the holding company for American Airlines and US Airways. Together with wholly owned and third-party regional carriers operating as American Eagle and US Airways Express, the airlines operate an average of nearly 6,700 flights per day to 339 destinations in 54 countries from its hubs in Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix and Washington, D.C. The American Airlines AAdvantage and US Airways Dividend Miles programs allow members to earn miles for travel, vacation packages, car rentals, hotel stays and everyday purchases. Members of both programs can redeem miles for tickets as well as upgrades to First Class and Business Class. In addition, AAdvantage members can redeem miles for vacation packages, car rentals, hotel stays and retail products. American is a founding member of the oneworld alliance, whose members and members-elect serve nearly 1,000 destinations with 14,250 daily flights to 150 countries. Connect with American on Twitter @AmericanAir and Facebook.com/AmericanAirlines and follow US Airways on Twitter @USAirways.
SOURCE American Airlines