American Airlines to stop flying to four small cities, citing pilot shortage

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  • American Airlines says it will drop service to Islip, NY, Ithaca, NY, Toledo, Ohio and Dubuque, Iowa.
  • The airline cited pilot shortage for its decision.
  • United and Delta also recently cut service in some smaller cities.

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American Airlines plans to drop service to four US cities in September, including Dubuque, Iowa, which will lose scheduled commercial air service altogether.

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The Fort Worth-based carrier attributed the service cuts to a lack of field pilots. American, United Airlines and Delta Air Lines have shortened service between some smaller cities and their hubs, citing a lack of aviators.

Islip and Ithaca in Dubuque, Toledo, Ohio, and New York will lose service to American on September 7, the day after Labor Day. “We will be actively reaching out to customers traveling after this date to offer alternative arrangements,” American said in a statement.

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The airport was served by regional airline subsidiaries of American Airlines. Last week, those carriers hiked pilot pay in an effort to address the shortfall, which comes after many airlines shed aviators during the pandemic when demand for travel returns.

Eugene F. Kranz Toledo Express Airport spokeswoman Holly Kemler said airport staff were “incredibly disappointed” by the American’s decision.

“Please note, this decision was made only by the airline, mainly due to the lack of regional pilots,” she said. “Unfortunately, we understand that this is a current continuing trend in the aviation industry.”

Kemler said the airport is still served by sun-seeker-focused airline Allegiant.

American Airlines said the cities would still be served by flights to other airports that are 45 miles and 120 miles apart.

Credit: www.cnbc.com /

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