Delta announces additional flight cuts
Friday, December 12, 2014
AIRLINE CITES SHORTAGE OF PILOTS, REDUCTION OF 50-SEAT AIRCRAFT
MEMPHIS, TN – Delta Air Lines has notified the Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority (MSCAA) that it will cease its nonstop flights to O’Hare International Airport (ORD) in Chicago, effective December 31. The airline cited a pilot staffing shortage for this reduction and said that other markets across the nation would be affected as well. Delta currently operates three 50-seat flights per day to ORD.
In addition, in early 2015, Delta will eliminate nonstop flights between Memphis and Indianapolis International Airport (IND), Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU), and switching flights to Orlando International Airport (MCO) from daily to Saturday-only. These changes were not included in Delta’s communication with the Airport Authority this week related to the elimination of Delta’s nonstop flight to Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport (ORD). Delta has not provided specific dates for the changes at this point. The airline indicated that these cuts are part of an accelerated plan to reduce their 50-seat aircraft.
Memphis International Airport passengers will still have nonstop service to Chicago from American Airlines, Southwest Airlines, and United Airlines. There are a combined total of 11 nonstop flights to Chicago that are available each day through these carriers. Southwest Airlines offers daily flights to Orlando, and will add a seasonal second daily flight to MCO in March.
“This is not welcome news, but it does not change our steadfast commitment to increasing air service at MEM,” said Scott Brockman, President and CEO of MSCAA. “Other carriers have seen new opportunities here and added service, and we continue to meet with airlines in an effort to boost air service.”