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United to halt JFK service as airline battles FAA so as to add more flights

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United Airlines said on Friday it should suspend service in late October to Latest York’s John F. Kennedy Airport.

Earlier this month, United had threatened to take the motion if the Federal Aviation Administration didn’t grant the air carrier additional flights.

United has been flying just twice every day to San Francisco and Los Angeles from JFK, the busiest Latest York-area airport, after resuming service in 2021.

“Given our current, too-small-to-be-competitive schedule out of JFK — coupled with the beginning of the winter season where more airlines will operate their slots as they resume JFK flying — United has made the difficult decision to temporarily suspend service at JFK,” United said, in a memo seen by Reuters.

The airline didn’t specify when it’d resume service.

United said its “discussions with FAA have been constructive” but added “it’s also clear that process so as to add additional capability at JFK will take a while. “

United said the choice would impact 100 employees who work at JFK but emphasized that “nobody is losing their job” and employees will transition to other nearby airports.

United has been working to pursue additional slots – that are takeoff and landing authorizations – through the FAA and by searching for industrial agreements to accumulate slots from other airlines.

United said without everlasting slots it cannot serve JFK “effectively in comparison with the larger schedules and more attractive flight times flown by our competitors” like JetBlue Airways and American Airlines.

United in 2015 struck a long-term deal to lease 24 year-round slots at JFK to Delta Air Lines because it ended JFK service to pay attention at its nearby Newark hub in northern Latest Jersey. It also flies out of LaGuardia.

United argues there’s room to grow at JFK, the Thirteenth-busiest U.S. airport, since the FAA and the Port Authority since 2008 have made significant infrastructure investments including “the widening of runways, construction of multi-entrance taxiways, and the creation of aligned high-speed turnoffs.”

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