© Reuters. A Delta Air Lines Boeing 737 aircraft is located at the gate of LAX airport in Los Angeles
By David Shepardson and Tracy Rucinski
WASHINGTON / CHICAGO (Reuters) – United Airlines Co (O 🙂 announced late Saturday that flights to the UK would be cut after Washington extended travel restrictions to the UK and Ireland and Southwest Airlines (N 🙂 as a corona virus for flight cuts changeover outbreak weakened demand.
Delta Airlines Inc (N 🙂 also said it plans to cut flights to the UK.
Southwest, one of the few US airlines that still has a full flight schedule, said it was "seriously" considering cutting flights.
As airlines struggled to contain losses and protect jobs, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the government would "immediately" work with Congress to support the aviation and cruise industries, both of which have been hard hit by the worsening crisis were.
US Vice President Mike Pence said restrictions on the UK and Ireland will start at midnight on Monday, provided most non-US citizens who have been in these countries for the past 14 days are not allowed to enter the United States.
They do not ban flights to and from the United States, and Americans and permanent residents can continue to travel.
United said it would discontinue flights to London from Houston and Denver as of Monday. United expects to fly three daily flights to London and one daily flight to Dublin by the end of April.
United said there would be credit for the value of the ticket to any customer whose international travel was interrupted by more than six hours due to schedule changes due to government restrictions. Customers who have not used the credit for 12 months will receive a refund.
Washington initially imposed restrictions on China and extended it to continental Europe this week, prompting US airlines to cut numerous flights and seek capital support.
Among the cost-cutting measures, US airlines are offering their employees voluntary unpaid leave to match staff with flights.
The outbreak came when Delta and its pilot union were in contract negotiations and the sides reached agreement on coronavirus sick leave and coping with overcrowding for April with partially paid schedules. United and Southwest could soon make arrangements with their pilots, sources said.
On Friday, Delta announced it would cut capacity by 40% over the next few months, the largest reduction in its history. For almost 30 days, almost all flights to continental Europe are canceled and up to 300 aircraft are parked.
United and American Airlines (NASDAQ 🙂 also announced cuts in European service this week. Major U.S. airlines confirmed on Friday that they had spoken to the White House and Congress about financial aid.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce on Friday urged the government to "turn next to a package to help affected employers … No company should go bankrupt for a temporary loss of coronavirus revenue."
Airlines are experiencing a slump in bookings and traffic as the rapidly expanding pandemic leads to travel restrictions and event cancellations worldwide.
The US passenger train Amtrak announced on Saturday that it had cut the services due to lower demand. Last week, the company announced that bookings had dropped 50% since the corona virus outbreak.
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