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American Airlines is canceling or postponing a number of international flights that were set to launch next summer, blaming a delay in the arrival of new planes from Boeing as the reason.

American officials said more than a dozen 787s they expected to have by this winter will not be available, forcing schedule changes to make up for the lack of aircraft.

“Boeing continues to be unable to deliver the 787s we have on order, including as many as 13 aircraft that were slated to be in our fleet by this winter. Without these wide bodies, we simply won’t be able to fly as much internationally as we had planned next summer, or as we did in summer 2019,” Vasu Raja, American’s chief revenue officer, stated in an internal memo sent to employees, Reuters reported

Changes that will be made include:

  • Elimination of all flights to Edinburgh, Scotland; Shannon, Ireland; and Hong Kong
  • Elimination of flights to markets it had served prior to 2019, including Berlin; Budapest; Prague; Dubrovnik, Croatia; and Reykjavík, Iceland
  • Major reduction in service to Sydney, Beijing, and Shanghai, and a reduction in service to South American destinations Buenos Aires, Rio de Janiero, Sao Paulo, and Santiago, Chile

The moves come about one month after American cut 27 domestic routes from its schedule, including 18 flights from New York to cities across the country.

“Flight attendant staffing at American remains strained and reflects what is happening across the industry as we continue to deal with pandemic-related issues,” Paul Hartshorn Jr., a spokesman for the union representing American’s flight attendants, told the Associated Press.

The changes to international flights, however, are being put squarely on Boeing. Deliveries of 787s have been delayed until at least April 1, Reuters reported.

“We deeply regret the impact to our customers as we work through the process to resume deliveries of new 787s,” Boeing said in a statement.

United Airlines is also waiting on delivery of new planes from Boeing but has not said how delays could impact its schedule.Want more travel news? See all our coverage here.


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