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American, United pause nonstop flights to Shanghai amid concerns over restrictions facing overseas crews


American Airlines Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner takes off from Los Angeles worldwide Airport on November 11, 2020 in Los Angeles, California.

AaronP | Bauer-Griffin | GC Images | Getty Images

American Airlines and United Airlines are pausing plans to function nonstop flights to Shanghai from the U.S. following reviews of prolonged waits facing airline crews upon arrival, restricted native lodging and restrictions on their motion within the nation, in accordance to folks acquainted with the matter.

They will as a substitute route the flights with a cease in South Korea, the folks stated, asking not to be named as a result of they are not approved to speak about it.

Airlines have not resumed most of their China service after suspending it in February because the coronavirus was spreading.

American Airlines deliberate to start nonstop flights carrying solely cargo from Los Angeles to Shanghai this month however will proceed to function the flight with a cease in Seoul, South Korea, on the way in which to Asia, the folks stated. It will fly nonstop from Shanghai again to Los Angeles, nonetheless. American can be persevering with to embrace a cease in Seoul on its cargo-only flights from Dallas-Fort Worth and from Los Angeles to Beijing due to related concerns, one of many folks stated.

Long waits to enter the nation and get to inns are an issue for airways as a result of it may well eat into federally mandated crew relaxation necessities.

Last month, American resumed China service with flights between Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport and Shanghai with a cease in Seoul.

“We are pleased by that decision and look forward to continued dialogue to ensure that when we resume flying it’s in the best interest of American and its pilots,” stated Dennis Tajer, an American Airlines Boeing 737 captain and spokesman for the Allied Pilots Association, which represents the service’s pilots.

United, for its half, stated it has added a cease in Seoul on its San Francisco-Shanghai service.

“Due to changes in operating conditions, we adjusted service between San Francisco and Shanghai to now include a stop in Seoul, South Korea for a crew change as we did earlier this year,” United stated in a press release. Passengers booked to Shanghai keep on the aircraft through the cease.

Delta Air Lines plans to provide nonstop flights to Shanghai from Seattle and Detroit beginning this week.

“Delta has shared with us their plan and the logistics surrounding the initiation of nonstop service to Shanghai,” Delta’s pilots’ union, the Air Line Pilots Association, stated in a press release. “Right now, we are studying it to make sure that it is airtight.”

In addition to prolonged airport waits, airline labor unions have expressed concerns in regards to the Chinese government-mandated airport resort that flight crews would keep in and reported restrictions on crews leaving resort rooms.

The Chinese Embassy in Washington and the U.S. Department of Transportation did not instantly reply to requests for remark.



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