DELTA REACTS TO WAR WITH SCHEDULE REDUCTIONS
Delta Air Lines said Monday it will pare domestic and international routes by 12 percent due to soft passenger demand, becoming the latest major U.S. carrier to announce staff or network reductions since the beginning of the war with Iraq last week.
Delta will suspend flights in some cities and delay seasonal service in others. Domestically, Delta will not reduce the number of destinations it serves, but will decrease the number of flights it offers on certain routes. Transatlantic changes are effective April 6, while domestic changes are effective March 27, and will last at least through April.
'We hope to reinstate the entire schedule as soon as passenger demand returns,' Subodh Karnik, senior vice president for network and revenue management, said in a statement.
On March. 20, American Airlines announced a 6-percent reduction in international flights for April as demand weakened with the onset of the Middle East conflict. American did not cut domestic capacity beyond the 7-percent reduction from April 2002 already planned.
Continental Airlines said the same day that it would cut 1,200 jobs and Northwest said it would reduce its schedule by 12 percent.
All the carriers count on belly-hold cargo to maximize revenue from their flights.