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New Route of the Day – Americas (4 January 2022): American between Austin and Albuquerque

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American continues to expand its network from Austin in Texas. On 4 January the carrier launched daily service to Albuquerque in New Mexico using E175s operated by Envoy Air. Year-round competition on the 1,000-kilometre route comes from Southwest, which also operates a daily service between the two airports. In addition, Allegiant offers 2-weekly service (Mondays and Fridays) during the peak summer period.

In the last two years, American has added over 20 routes from Austin, and more than doubled its weekly seat capacity. According to Cirium data, American is offering 520 weekly departures from Austin in January, not far behind the airport’s biggest carrier, Southwest, which is planning 552 departures per week. However, in terms of seats offered, Southwest is still 20% bigger than American.

Albuquerque traffic still about 20% below pre-pandemic levels

Albuquerque International Sunport (IATA code ABQ) is the busiest airport in the state of New Mexico. Prior to the pandemic it was handling between five and seven million passengers each year. In the most recent month for which data is available (November) the airport welcomed almost 360,000 passengers. This is around 20% fewer than in November 2019. Southwest accounted for 43.5% of passengers, followed by American (25.7%), Delta (13.3%) and United (10.2%).

After not welcoming any new airline services in 2021, Albuquerque will welcome its second new route of 2022 on 17 January, when Southwest begins daily service to Burbank in California.

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What they said

Richard McCurley, Interim Director of Aviation for the City of Albuquerque, said: “Our newest service to Austin is a promising sign of Albuquerque’s growing presence as a business and tourism destination. This is a key step in our journey to continue recovering from the pandemic and also meet the increasing demand for a return to normal travel operations.”

Brian Znotins, VP of Network Planning, American Airlines, added: “We’re eager to connect Albuquerque with Austin, complementing our existing service from our Chicago-O’Hare, Dallas-Fort Worth, Los Angeles and Phoenix hubs. Whether customers are traveling for business between the two growing tech cities, or reconnecting with family and friends, we’re pleased to provide them with another option for their journeys.”

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