FORT WORTH, Texas - Fort Worth-based American Airlines plans to cut some international flights next summer due to expected deliveries of new Boeing planes that have been delayed.
Being is blaming manufacturing problems.
The good news is the cancellations won't impact the upcoming holiday travel schedule. But American Airlines passengers booked on some international flights next summer may need to find another airline.
Other U.S. carriers, like United, are affected too. It’s another blow to the airline industry trying to get back on track.
Just as the airline industry is beginning to find its stride again, American Airlines announced it's dropping some international destinations from its flight plans next summer.
The airline says the cancellations are due to Boeing failing to deliver 13 Dreamliners it ordered.
A new American Airlines 737-800 aircraft featuring a new paint job with the company’s new logo sits at a gate at O'Hare Airport on January 29, 2013 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Gabe Saglie is a senior editor with TravelZoo.
American says it can't fly as much without the two-aisle 787 jet.
"What hurts here? A couple of things when it comes at a time when we are starting to see, despite a couple of bumps on the road, increased desire to travel internationally, especially in 2022 and especially to Europe," Saglie said.
Boeing is trying to overcome quality concerns and manufacturing problems.
In a statement, Boeing said in part "we have engaged with the FAA on this issue in meetings and working sessions over hundreds of hours and will continue to do so."
Economist John Rosen says delayed deliveries of the Dreamliners will hurt the airline's bottom line.
American isn't alone. United has several orders pending as does Lufthansa and Emirates. However, the two international carriers aren’t expecting their 787s for quite some time.
"You have a whole host of things, however, that make it harder for the airlines to make a profit on that increased demand," Rosen said. "Labor costs are going up. There's a labor shortage. It's hard. It's really hard for an airline to come back up running."
From a customer relations standpoint, Saglie says now is the time to give passengers the heads up.
"I don't see a lot of folks being ok with waiting," he said. "Another 12 months or two to travel is another favorite European destinations. I think inevitably they will look at some competitor airlines."
It’s too soon to tell how many international routes will ultimately be affected or when the Dreamlines will be cleared by the FAA for takeoff.