Sometime this year, American Airlines will discontinue service from Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport to Reagan National Airport in Washington D.C. and to New York's LaGuardia Airport.
The Department of Justice required the airline to drop the three daily departures from Minneapolis to Reagan National and the four daily departures to LaGuardia in approving American's merger with U.S. Airways.
"At this point, we don't know exactly when the service will end," said Patrick Hogan, a spokesman for the MSP airport. "It depends, in part, on when they sell the slots at those airports. We have other service to both airports, and out hope is that another airline will pick up the routes when American's service ends."
The DOJ told American it had to divest slots and gates at key constrained airports across the country to low cost carrier airlines (LCCs) in order to enhance system-wide competition in the airline industry resulting in more choices and more competitive airfares for consumers. Those airports are in Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York and Near Washington, D.C.
Low cost carriers that operate at MSP include Southwest Airlines, Air Tran, Spirit Airlines, Frontier Airlines and Sun Country.
In other airline news, Southwest Airlines announced Monday that is will launch its first international routes. Starting July 1, the airline said it will offer nonstop service from Atlanta to Aruba and Montego Bay, Jamaica. It also will fly from Baltimore-Washington (BWI) to Aruba, Nassau, Bahamas, and Montego Bay. On Saturdays it will offer service from Orlando to Aruba and Montego Bay.
Currently Southwest flys from the Twin Cities to Chicago Midway, Denver and St. Louis.