Etihad Airways has confirmed that it will suspend its Abu Dhabi – Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) passenger link from March next year, claiming the service has become “commercially unsustainable following American Airlines’ unilateral decision to terminate its codeshare agreement” with Etihad.
Peter Baumgartner, Etihad Airways’ chief executive, observed: “The unfortunate decision by American Airlines to terminate a commercial relationship that benefited both carriers has left Etihad with no choice but to suspend flights between our Abu Dhabi home and Dallas/Fort Worth.”
However, he added: “We are open to American Airlines reversing its decision to cancel our codeshare agreement so that Etihad Airways can continue the route and together protect and support American national interests and global connectivity while driving commercial value for both airlines.”
Etihad said that it has “invested heavily” in the DFW route since its launch in December 2014.
The route was launched at a three times a week frequency before being upgraded to a daily service in February 2017.
Baumgartner insisted: “The cancellation of the Dallas route is one of several adjustments that we are making to our US network in 2018 in order to improve system profitability. Further changes are possible.”
Etihad currently operates 42 non-stop flights a week to five US gateways – Chicago, DFW, Los Angeles, New York and Washington.
Plus, Etihad Cargo operates twice a week Boeing 777F freighter services to and from Rickenbacker International Airport in Columbus, Ohio, and Tucson, Arizona.
In late October, Trinity Logistics USA and Etihad joined forces to launch a weekly B777 freighter service between Hanoi in Vietnam and Ohio’s Rickenbacker airport.
The US logistics operator and the Middle East carrier already operated a joint twice-weekly B777F to Asia, from Colombo in Sri Lanka to Rickenbacker. Both services are fixed long-term contracts and scheduled by Etihad.
The flights operate exclusively for Trinity Logistics and support “a multitude of clients from the fashion, retail, and high-tech industries,” according to the freight forwarder’s president, David Pereira.