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Lines on Thursday announced it applied to launch its first transatlantic
service from London's Heathrow Airport, using slots that the U.S. Department of
Transportation and European Commission required American Airlines and British
Airways to forfeit as a condition of approval of their transatlantic joint
that, if approved, it would launch on March 27, 2011, twice-daily service between
Heathrow and Boston's Logan International Airport and daily service between
Heathrow and Miami International Airport.
new service would provide more choices and competition for customers traveling
between these important U.S. cities and London, one of the most popular
destinations in Europe for both business and leisure travelers," said
Delta executive vice president of network planning and revenue management Glen
Hauenstein in a statement. "Awarding these slots to Delta and SkyTeam
would significantly enhance competition among the major alliances across the
Atlantic." Delta's SkyTeam airline alliance partners hold only 5 percent
of Heathrow's current slots, the carrier asserted.
come one month after AA and BA ended a years-long quest for immunity from
antitrust regulations when the EC and DOT accepted their offer to sacrifice
required the carriers make slots available "to facilitate the entry or
expansion of competitors on routes between London and New York, Boston, Dallas
and Miami." DOT conditions included AA and BA relinquishing to competitors
four daily slot pairs at Heathrow, "with two pairs to be used for
Boston-London service and the other two for service from any other U.S. cities."