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Friday, April 9, 2010

Rumor: Frequency reductions on 7 NRT routes

JiJi.com reports that Japan Airlines (JAL) is planning to reduce frequency on 7 Narita routes from October, resulting a reduction of 40 weekly flights at NRT.

The report mentions 5 routes such as Icheon (ICN) and Taipei (TPE) will its weekly flights reduced by 7 and Hanoi (HAN) will be reduced by 4. That's a total of 39 flight reductions. So does it mean there's 1 destination will see 1 weekly flight reduction?

Below are the cuts mentioned in the report:
Taipei (TPE): from 3 daily (2 767's, 1 738) to 2 daily (-7 weekly)
Icheon (ICN): from 3 daily (2 767's, 1 773) to 2 daily (-7 weekly)
Hanoi (HAN): from 1 daily (767) to 3 weekly (-4 weekly)

Assumed frequency reductions
Beijing (PEK) is also mentioned as one of the routes but the report does not specify the frequency reduced. But I think it's safe to assume 7 weekly will be cut.
PEK: from 2 daily (1 767, 1 738) to 1 daily (-7 weekly) [assumption]

**SPECULATIONS**
My guess is a lot of these flights are not really cut. A more accurate way to describe this will be transferring from NRT to Haneda (HND) which is scheduled to expand its international flights in October. The Japanese government plan to have shuttle services to mainland China, Korea, Taiwan and Hong Kong. So JAL will most likely transfer the TPE, PEK and ICN flights to HND.

So this means there are still 3 (or 2 if you believe the report rounded up the number to 40) routes missing. Below are my SPECULATIONS

Shanghai Pudong (PVG): from 3 daily (767's) to 2 daily (-7 weekly) [speculation]
It just make sense to move PVG as well right? JAL might as well make this a HND-SHA so it will be much easier for business travelers.
Hong Kong (HKG): from 2 daily (744, 767) to 1 daily (-7 weekly) [speculation]
JAL can easily transfer JL731/732 from NRT to HND while keeping JL735/736 at NRT for connecting passengers.

Another possible candidate of 7 weekly reduction is Honolulu (HNL). JAL currently operates 3 daily NRT-HNL (744) and 4 daily HNL-NRT (3 744's, 1 767) flights. There are some room for the cut and this will be real cut if it happens. So I think HKG and HNL are "fighting" for the last spot :P [speculation]

The 1 weekly reduction flight left is a wild guess, I will just throw out Delhi (DEL) as the candidate. Again this is a wild guess! Currently JAL operates 3 weekly flights with 772 to DEL. [wild guess]

So this will be my rumor + speculation + wild guess list of frequency reductions on NRT routes.

Similar Posts:
Rumor: List of 31 JAL domestic routes to be suspended
Rumor: List of 29 JAL international routes to be suspended by March 2011
JAL Cabin Crew Union: This is a de facto layoff!
Rumor: JAL to cut 16,500 jobs by March 2011

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