American Airlines is discontinuing service in three locations this autumn in response to the industry-wide pilot shortage.
The Texas-based carrier informed FOX Business Monday that its service in Islip and Ithaca, New York, as well as in Toledo, Ohio, would terminate starting on Sept. 7.
“We’re incredibly appreciative for the attention and support our team members offered to our passengers in Islip, Ithaca and Toledo, and are working closely with them throughout this time,”American Airlines said in a statement.
The carrier said it’s proactively reaching out to customers who are booked to travel after the aforementioned date and is offering other arrangements.
The “difficult” decision to restrict service comes as major airlines deal with a scarcity of pilots at a time when demand for travel is increasing.
FOX Business reported earlier this month that the airline industry is short 12,000 pilots and that the majority of airports throughout the US, around 303, are already operating fewer flights.
In reality, “there were 188 villages that lost at least 25 percent of their aviation service, either during the pandemic or during the first half of 2022 when the pilot shortage increased,” the Regional Airline Association (RAA) earlier noted.
Last month, Alaska Airlines CEO Ben Minicucci stated the company will have daily cancelations until June 1 owing to the pilot shortage.
The carrier had been facing operational issues since April owing to not having enough pilots to fly its spring schedule, Minicucci said in a statement to customers last month.
Of its 1,200 daily flights, it’s been cancelling roughly 50 of them, Minicucci said.
Meanwhile, earlier this year, JetBlue stated it was forced to cut flights during the summer owing to personnel concerns.
At the start of 2022, United Airlines announced the start of its training program. United anticipated that the academy will teach about 5,000 new pilots by 2030 — meeting half of its ambition to hire 10,000 new pilots in that period to tackle the shortfall.