NEW YORK- The Chinese flag carrier, Air China (CA), has outlined new plans to launch a flight route within the United States, specifically from New York (JFK) to Los Angeles (LAX). They intend to operate this flight three times a week.
Air China currently flies to around five to six US cities and operates a few weekly flights.
Air China New York-Los Angeles Flights
These improvements include:
- Flight from Beijing to New York JFK.
- Flight from New York JFK to Los Angeles.
- Flight from Los Angeles to Beijing.
Given the current limitations on flights between the U.S. and China, this strategic move allows them to serve New York without significantly impacting their Los Angeles service, reported Viewfromthewing.
While Air China has a partnership with United Airlines (UA), they aim to focus on offering one-stop same-aircraft connections rather than working closely with United at Newark, which is not the same as New York JFK.
It’s important to note that Air China will only carry their own connecting passengers on the New York JFK to Los Angeles flight. It won’t be possible to purchase a ticket solely for that flight, and this service will operate in one direction only, from Los Angeles to New York.
Qantas Tried to Fly Domestic but Denied
Qantas (QF) used to operate roundtrip flights between New York and Los Angeles. This service allowed them to serve New York by flying passengers from Australia to Los Angeles and continuing with their aircraft to New York.
They would then pick up passengers bound for Australia in New York, flying them to Los Angeles and onwards to Australia.
However, it’s important to note that Qantas was not permitted to carry local traffic between New York and Los Angeles. In fact, they faced issues with the Department of Transportation for selling seats in conjunction with international codeshares on other airlines.
Specifically, they were fined $125,000 (with half forgiven) for selling tickets in 2015 and 2016 on Qantas codeshares for Air Tahiti Nui’s Los Angeles – Papeete flights and American Airlines’ Los Angeles – Auckland flights.
Qantas argued that this practice was legal, citing a 1959 U.S. regulation that allowed foreign carriers to incidentally transport traffic within the U.S. only if it was part of their international operations.
However, the Department of Transportation disagreed with this interpretation. As the situation wasn’t entirely clear-cut, the DOT settled for a relatively low fine for the sake of a victory.
Qantas chose not to contest the matter since discontinuing the practice was not a significant cost for them, and the $62,500 fine was not a substantial issue for the Australian flag carrier.
It’s not Allowed
It’s worth noting that a “fifth freedom flight” typically involves travel between two countries that do not include the airline’s home country.
Conversely, cabotage refers to a foreign airline transporting domestic passengers within another country, which is generally not allowed, even if it involves a third country.
Some airlines have faced issues when flying passengers between the U.S. and Guam via Seoul or Tokyo, even though it might be a convenient routing.
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