Wednesday, October 20, 2010

American and American Eagle announce new service at LAX

American Airlines and American Eagle have strengthened their commitment to Los Angeles with plans to add 10 new destinations – one international and nine domestic –for a total of 33 additional round trips beginning April, 5, 2011.

New destinations from LAX include (total number of daily flights):

Albuquerque, N.M. (3)
Boise, Idaho (2)
El Paso, Texas (2)
Houston Bush Intercontinental (3)
Oklahoma City, Okla. (1)
Phoenix, Ariz. (4)
Shanghai, China* (1)
Salt Lake City, Utah (3)
Sacramento, Calif. (4)
Tucson, Ariz. (3)

Four of the new routes will be served by American Eagle's Bombardier CRJ-700 fleet, which now features a First Class cabin. All four existing daily flights to Denver also will be upgraded with the addition of CRJ-700 service.

In addition to Los Angeles-Shanghai, American will offer seven additional daily domestic flights from Los Angeles, including two flights each to Dallas/Fort Worth and Miami and one flight each to Chicago, Las Vegas and Orlando. By spring 2011, American and American Eagle will offer 153 daily departures at LAX – a 28 percent increase from today's schedule. The airlines also have flexibility to add more flights and destinations in the future.

"Today's announcement demonstrates our commitment to superior service and travel choices for our customers to and from Los Angeles," said Virasb Vahidi, American's Chief Commercial Officer. "Los Angeles has long been an important market for American and American Eagle and is a critical international gateway for us as well as our oneworld® Alliance partners."

American's latest network enhancements at LAX will complement the 18 international departures offered by oneworld alliance members at the airport, including to such markets as Auckland, New Zealand; Hong Kong; Lima, Peru; London; Melbourne, Australia; San Salvador, El Salvador; and Tokyo.

With the Los Angeles expansion, American continues to strengthen its "cornerstone" network strategy that focuses more flying to and from the markets of Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles, Miami and New York. These markets represent top U.S. commerce centers and are significant international gateways, which provide the best connections to American's global network and the networks of its partner airlines in the oneworld Alliance.

"I would like to thank American Airlines for strengthening their commitment to Los Angeles by bringing more flights into our great City and spurring economic development by investing $20 million into their terminal," Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said. "Los Angeles, an international global destination, is proud to partner with American Airlines, a world-class airline, to connect more people and to provide more jobs for hard-working Angelenos."

American estimates that its expanded service will add approximately $600 million a year in local economic impact, increasing its total annual economic impact in Los Angeles to approximately $6 billion.

American has a rich historical connection to California. On Jan. 25, 1959, American became the first airline to offer coast-to-coast jet service with Boeing 707 flights between Los Angeles and New York's Idlewild Airport. In 2009, American and American Eagle served more than 9 million customers either traveling to, from or through LAX. The airline continues to grow in the state and, with the additions announced today, American will operate 267 daily nonstop flights to 35 destinations from California, serving cities throughout the United States as well as destinations in the Pacific, Europe, Canada, Mexico and Central America.

Today's announcement is the latest example of American's commitment to Los Angeles. Earlier this month, American, British Airways and Iberia announced the official launch of their Joint Business between North America and Europe by introducing a new Los Angeles – Madrid route (operated by Iberia) that will begin service in spring 2011. American will codeshare on that flight, allowing customers to buy a ticket on and earn AAdvantage® miles on the journey.

Also this month, American received approval from the U.S. Department of Transportation to launch service between Los Angeles and Shanghai. The new route will enhance American's service offering to China when it launches in April 2011, using 247-seat Boeing 777 aircraft which feature 16 First Class, 37 Business Class and 194 Economy Class seats.

Last month American announced new choices for customers between Los Angeles and Mexico through a new codeshare agreement with Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air. Pending regulatory approval, later this year American intends to offer customers the ability to purchase tickets on Alaska Airlines or Horizon Air from or through Los Angeles to the following markets: Mexico City**; Guadalajara**; La Paz (operated by Horizon Air); Loreto (operated by Horizon Air); Mazatlan; Puerto Vallarta; Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo and Manzanillo.

Approximately $20 Million in Facility Upgrades Also Planned

Last year, American Eagle opened a new terminal at LAX. As a result of today's announcement, American Eagle plans to expand the facility by adding four more gates, an investment of approximately $20 million. Construction is expected to be completed by the end of 2011, giving American Eagle 10 gates at LAX. The American Eagle terminal upgrade will complement American's amenities at Terminal 4, which features 13 gates, expanded curbside check-in with 13 skycap positions, 42 self-service machines, mobile check-in capability, including boarding pass and bag tag issuance, and an Admirals Club with a First Class Flagship Lounge. The airlines offer direct shuttle service between the two terminals.

First Class on American Eagle

With the introduction of nine First Class seats on its Bombardier CRJ-700 fleet, American Eagle now will be able to offer Los Angeles customers a premium product with the same level of outstanding service customers experience on American Airlines. Customers on Los Angeles flights to/from Denver, Houston Intercontinental, Oklahoma City, Phoenix and one daily flight to/from Albuquerque will be able to enjoy Eagle's new complimentary First Class dining service that includes a Continental breakfast with cereal or hot oatmeal and yogurt and a lunch or dinner that includes a fresh salad or a sandwich and dessert. First Class customers receive warm, cleansing towels and mixed nuts prior to their meals, which are served on china. On flights of shorter duration, beverage service will be accompanied by a gourmet snack mix.

"We are proud to begin First Class service to this important cornerstone market," said Dan Garton, President and Chief Executive Officer of American Eagle. "We have served the Los Angeles community for nearly 25 years and are very proud to continue our service and support of the community in which we live and work."

(American Airlines Press Release)

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