Delta and United Are Cutting Hundreds of Flights in the Coming Weeks
The airlines are decreasing activity on a variety of different routes.
Outside of the perks and benefits they use to bring in new customers and keep frequent travelers loyal, an airline's primary function is to get you where you need to go. Of course, while you still make the ultimate call on which airline and flight you book, we're all still at the whims of the carriers when it comes to how they set their schedules and which cities they choose to service. Unfortunately, this can lead to unexpected changes that put kinks in your travel plans. And now, Delta and United are both cutting hundreds of flights in the coming weeks. Read on to see which destinations will be affected.
Delta is cutting 10 percent of its flights from its New York City hubs.
Delta appears to be kicking off the new year by significantly shuffling around its schedule. The airline will be cutting 10 percent of flights from its hubs at New York's John F. Kennedy Airport (JFK) and LaGuardia Airport (LGA), a spokesperson for the airline confirmed to travel news outlet The Points Guy (TPG).
The changes will affect several smaller cities currently serviced by the carrier, including Bangor, Maine; Burlington, Vermont; Norfolk, Virginia; and Syracuse, New York. Posted flight data shows the changes will take effect in January and carry on at least through March, TPG reports.
The cuts also include the airline ending a route it recently launched from LGA to Greater Binghamton Airport (BGM) in New York. Instead, Delta will revert to serving the destination with flights from its Midwest hub at Detroit Metro Airport (DTW) beginning on Jan. 8, 2024.
The carrier is also reducing the number of flights to Tel Aviv, Israel, through September of next year.
But it's not just regional flights that are getting dropped. On Oct. 24, Delta announced it was scaling back service from a handful of U.S. cities to Ben Gurion Airport (TLV) in Tel Aviv, Israel, due to the ongoing conflict affecting the region, Simple Flying reports.
The airline specified that it had canceled all daily flights from JFK to TLV between Nov. 1 and Nov. 15. The airline is also suspending its three-times-a-week service from Boston Logan International Airport (BOS) to the Israeli destination through at least September 2024, as well as its service from its main hub at Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport (ATL) for the same duration.
"Delta is continuously monitoring the rapidly evolving security environment and assessing our operations based on security guidance and intelligence reports, including the most recent U.S. State Department travel advisory," the airline said in a statement, per Simple Flying. "While we remain committed to assisting those needing travel, Delta will continue making schedule adjustments, including additional cancellations on a rolling basis, as needed for the safety of our customers and crew."
United is reducing service between two major East Coast airports.
Another major carrier is also scaling back its schedule. Posted flight data shows that United Airlines will be dropping as many as five daily flights it currently operates between its hub at Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) and Washington Reagan National Airport (DCA) in Washington, D.C., beginning in April 2024, Simple Flying reports.
The changes appear to vary monthly, with 175 flights dropped from the schedule in April and 69 departures in May. The cuts continue through September—although some months may see a slight increase based on flight activity from the same month in 2023.
Other major airlines are making schedule changes of their own.
Delta and United aren't alone in altering their flight plans. This week, JetBlue Airways confirmed that it would be cutting flights to 17 cities and dropping routes from service at the start of next January, TPG reported.
The bulk of the changes will affect airports in the Northeast as the carrier drops its routes from BOS to EWR and Frederick Douglass Greater Rochester International Airport (ROC) in New York; JFK and DCA; and between EWR and Miami International Airport (MIA).
However, LGA will see the most cuts as it loses current routes to L.F. Wade International Airport (BDA) in Bermuda, Nashville International Airport (BNA), Charleston International Airport (CHS), Denver International Airport (DEN), Cape Cod Gateway Airport (HYA) in Hyannis, Massachusetts, Jacksonville International Airport (JAX), Portland International Jetport (PWM), and Sarasota Bradenton International Airport (SRQ).
Cuts aren't just limited to the Northeast. JetBlue will also be dropping its route between Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and CHS.
And perhaps most notably, a spokesperson for the airline confirmed in an email to Best Life that it would axe its route from JFK to Patrick Leahy Burlington International Airport (BTV) in a move that drops the Vermont city from its network entirely.
"Exiting a market is a difficult decision, however we expect the current air traffic controller shortage to last for some time and do not see a path to feasibly bringing back this flight," the airline said in a statement to Best Life. "We were privileged to have served the people of Vermont and appreciate the community's support over the years," adding that the last day of service will be Jan. 4, 2024.