American Airlines Inc said Saturday it plans to cut 75% of its international flights through May 6 and ground nearly all its widebody fleet, as airlines respond to the global collapse in travel demand due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The dramatic announcement by the largest US airline came hours after the White House said the United States would widen new travel restrictions on Europeans to include travelers in the United Kingdom and Ireland, starting Monday night.
The Trump administration also signaled Saturday it wanted Congress to quickly back financial support for troubled US airlines.
American’s sweeping cuts include suspending nearly all long-haul international flights to Asia, Australia, Europe, New Zealand and South America.
It will still operate two flights a day to London and just three flights to Asia per week — to Tokyo. It will continue short-haul international flying.
American confirmed it is parking nearly all widebody aircraft and anticipates its domestic capacity will be reduced by 20% in April and 30% in May versus the same period in 2019.
United Airlines Co said late Saturday it would begin cutting flights to the United Kingdom, Southwest Airlines moved toward flight cuts and Delta Airlines Inc plans to start cutting flights to the United Kingdom.
Southwest, one of the few US airlines still flying a full schedule, said it was “seriously considering” cutting flights.