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Qantas: Sydney Business Lounge, about 75% down on usual. American Airlines cancels flights

Qantas: Sydney Business Lounge, about 75% down on usual. American Airlines cancels flights

I’m in the Qantas Business lounge at Sydney Terminal 3 Domestic. Around 3:30 pm is usually the beginning of the busy evening period, even on a Monday. Not today. The Lounge is almost empty.

The Departures and Arrivals boards have their fair share of cancellations already.

This feels like day 1, which it is for the self-isolation of all foreign entry to Australia which started today.

Feels like an omen of things to come.

American Airlines cancels flights

American Airlines is phasing its suspension of long-haul international flights from the USA starting today (March 16, 2020). The current suspensions will run through until May 6, with the changes being in response to the fall in demand due to COVID-19. The suspension consists of:

  • Reduce international capacity by 75% year over year — from March 16 to May 6
  • One flight daily from Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW) to London (LHR), one flight daily from Miami (MIA) to LHR and three flights per week from DFW to Tokyo (NRT)
  • Continue short-haul international flying, which includes flights to Canada, Mexico, Caribbean, Central America and certain markets in the northern part of South America, as scheduled

American is anticipating a drop of domestic demand of 20% compared to same time last year.

Australia and New Zealand, effective March 16

  • Suspending service from Los Angeles (LAX) to Auckland (AKL) effective March 16, which was slated to end seasonal flying on March 28
  • Suspending service from LAX to Sydney (SYD) effective March 16

Updated Australia and NZ schedules:

OriginDestinationSchedule change
LAXAuckland (AKL)Final westbound flight will return to LAX on March 18; seasonal service is slated to begin again in October
LAXSydney (SYD)Final westbound flight will return to LAX on March 18; service suspended through May 6

You can read a full list of changes and suspensions for American Airlines International long-haul here.

2PAXfly Takeout

Unfortunate, but predictable. The first of many airlines to stop most if not all flights to Australia I suspect.

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