Department of Transportation Chooses American Airlines for Possible New Los Angeles-Beijing Flight

The department has been considering competing applications from both American and Delta

Department of Transportation Chooses American Airlines for Possible New Los Angeles-Beijing Flight
Image: American Airlines
November 8, 2016

The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) has chosen American Airlines for a potential new daily scheduled nonstop flight between Los Angeles and Beijing.

The department has been considering competing applications from both American and Delta. Each airline applied for the authority to conduct daily, round-trip, nonstop flights between the West Coast city and Beijing. Its tentative findings were that choosing American would add a third U.S. airline to the West Coast-Beijing market and thereby would enhance competition. The other two are Delta's flight from Seattle and United Airline's from San Francisco.

The aviation agreement between China and the U.S. puts a cap on the total number of weekly frequencies that each country's carriers are allowed to fly to primary Chinese cities, including Beijing and Shanghai. Four U.S. carriers—American, Delta, Hawaiian, and United—currently fly passengers between the two countries, and they already have almost all the frequencies available to the U.S. Since there are not enough frequencies left to approve both American's and Delta's requests, the USDOT had to hold a proceeding to choose an airline to provide passenger services in this market.

Any objections to this tentative position must be received by November 22, 2016. Subsequently, interested parties should submit answers to those objects by November 29, 2016. The USDOT will take into consideration all such submissions before making a final decision.