AMR builds up Los Angeles, turns a 3Q profit of $143 million

American Airlines and American Eagle (Dallas/Fort Worth) have strengthened their commitment to Los Angeles with plans to add 10 new destinations – one international and nine domestic – for a total of 33 additional round trips beginning April, 5, 2011.

New destinations from LAX include (total number of daily flights):

Albuquerque, N.M. (3)
Boise, Idaho (2)
El Paso, Texas (2)
Houston Bush Intercontinental (3)
Oklahoma City, Okla. (1)
Phoenix, Ariz. (4)
Shanghai, China* (1)
Salt Lake City, Utah (3)
Sacramento, Calif. (4)
Tucson, Ariz. (3)

Four of the new routes will be served by American Eagle’s Bombardier CRJ700 fleet, which now features a First Class cabin. All four existing daily flights to Denver also will be upgraded with the addition of CRJ700 service.

In addition to Los Angeles-Shanghai, American will offer seven additional daily domestic flights from Los Angeles, including two flights each to Dallas/Fort Worth and Miami and one flight each to Chicago, Las Vegas and Orlando. By spring 2011, American and American Eagle will offer 153 daily departures at LAX – a 28 percent increase from today’s schedule. The airlines also have flexibility to add more flights and destinations in the future.

American’s latest network enhancements at LAX will complement the 18 international departures offered by oneworld alliance members at the airport, including to such markets as Auckland, New Zealand; Hong Kong; Lima, Peru; London; Melbourne, Australia; San Salvador, El Salvador; and Tokyo.

With the Los Angeles expansion, American continues to strengthen its “cornerstone” network strategy that focuses more flying to and from the markets of Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles, Miami and New York. These markets represent top U.S. commerce centers and are significant international gateways, which provide the best connections to American’s global network and the networks of its partner airlines in the oneworld Alliance.

American has a rich historical connection to California. On Jan. 25, 1959, American became the first airline to offer coast-to-coast jet service with Boeing 707 flights between Los Angeles and New York’s Idlewild Airport.

Also this month, American received approval from the U.S. Department of Transportation to launch service between Los Angeles and Shanghai. The new route will enhance American’s service offering to China when it launches in April 2011, using 247-seat Boeing 777 aircraft which feature 16 First Class, 37 Business Class and 194 Economy Class seats.

Last month American announced new choices for customers between Los Angeles and Mexico through a new codeshare agreement with Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air. Pending regulatory approval, later this year American intends to offer customers the ability to purchase tickets on Alaska Airlines or Horizon Air from or through Los Angeles to the following markets: Mexico City**; Guadalajara**; La Paz (operated by Horizon Air); Loreto (operated by Horizon Air); Mazatlan; Puerto Vallarta; Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo and Manzanillo.

Last year, American Eagle opened a new terminal at LAX. As a result of today’s announcement, American Eagle plans to expand the facility by adding four more gates, an investment of approximately $20 million. Construction is expected to be completed by the end of 2011, giving American Eagle 10 gates at LAX. The American Eagle terminal upgrade will complement American’s amenities at Terminal 4, which features 13 gates, expanded curbside check-in with 13 skycap positions, 42 self-service machines, mobile check-in capability, including boarding pass and bag tag issuance, and an Admirals Club with a First Class Flagship Lounge. The airlines offer direct shuttle service between the two terminals.

On the financial side, AMR Corporation, the parent company of American Airlines, Inc., reported a net profit of $143 million for the third quarter of 2010, or $0.39 per diluted share.

The current quarter results compare to a net loss of $359 million for the third quarter 2009, or $1.26 per share, which included the impact of approximately $94 million in non-recurring charges related to the sale of certain aircraft and the grounding of leased Airbus A300 aircraft prior to lease expiration. Excluding those non-recurring charges, the third quarter 2009 loss was $265 million, or $0.93 per share.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough. Please click on the photo for further details.