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American Airlines Announces Its First Nonstop Flight to India in Nearly a Decade

American Airlines Announces Its First Nonstop Flight to India in Nearly a Decade
Taylor Rains

In an interesting turn of events, American and Alaska have announced a new international partnership that will feed each other passengers and provide reciprocal frequent-flier benefits. It appears the common enemy of both carriers is Delta Airlines. Delta has established a strong presence in Seattle (Alaska’s base), and dubbed the city its gateway to Asia. Furthermore, it lured away American Airlines’ former codeshare partner, LATAM, and added American’s Miami base as one of its new focus cities. This announcement comes after American and Alaska were looking to split ways, but as the saying goes, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend,” and I guess the two realized the best way to combat Delta was to join forces.

New Codeshare

American and Alaska have created a new international and domestic partnership with an enhanced network and reciprocal frequent-flier programs. This will give American customers access to Alaska’s vast West Cost network, and Alaska customers access to American’s extensive international and domestic routes. Alaska is also planning to join Oneworld, the international airline alliance that was co-founded by American. Nathaniel Pieper, Alaska’s Senior Vice President of Finance, Alliances, and Treasury said, “We’re fired up about it. The line that’s been kicking around is ‘Alaska goes global'”.

The new partnership is still under government review, but during the Alaska-Virgin merger, the Department of Justice determined that Alaska cannot codeshare with American on routes in which American competed with Virgin. This may limit the routes that Alaska and American can partner on.

New Routes

There have only been a few routes announced so far, including service between Seattle and Bangalore, India, and Seattle and London, both of which will be operated by American. The Seattle to Bangalore route is a big move for American, making it the first airline to offer flights between the United States and the Indian city. The route will be operated by the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner and will be in high demand for corporate customers wanting to travel to India’s high-tech city. The route is expected to launch in October and through the partnership with Alaska, will connect over 100 U.S. cities through Seattle to Bangalore. American’s Senior Vice President of Network Strategy, Vasu Raja, said in a statement, “Bangalore is one of our highest demand destinations for our corporate accounts, really all over the country.”

This new route will be American’s only U.S. – India service. The carrier used to fly from Chicago to Delhi but ended those flights in 2012.

View Comments (6)

6 Comments

  1. USinSpain

    February 15, 2020 at 7:17 am

    This is not their first nonstop to India. Big oversight!

  2. Snuggs

    February 16, 2020 at 5:06 am

    Ever wonder about the out and out false titles used for some of these articles? Is it an attempt at sensationalism, or ignorance? Clearly, this isn’t the “first”.

    At least in my case, the sensationalism does draw me in:it’s why I’ve all but stopped looking at these “news” items. Today just happened to be a very slow day.

  3. Icecat

    February 16, 2020 at 6:35 pm

    I wonder how the new flight will (?) effect the Bangalore Express from SFO..

  4. Icecat

    February 16, 2020 at 6:45 pm

    Good news, if you’re able to fly business this is great.. If the plane has PE that would work also. Regular coach might want to try another carrier.

  5. vudoosj

    February 18, 2020 at 9:40 am

    do your research. this is not AA’s first to India.

  6. J S

    February 19, 2020 at 9:08 pm

    The headline and the last sentence of the article directly contradict each other.

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