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American Airlines recently unveiled its summer 2020 international schedule, and the new transatlantic routes show that the airline continues to think beyond the once-typical international destinations — such as Paris, London, and Rome — to broaden its global reach.
American’s new seasonal service from Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) to Mohammed V International Airport (CMN) in Casablanca, Morocco, not only marks the airline’s first-ever entrance into Africa, but makes it the only U.S. carrier offering nonstop service to Casablanca.
“As American’s trans-Atlantic gateway, Philadelphia plays an important role connecting customers traveling between destinations across the U.S., Europe — and now Africa,” said Jim Moses, American Airlines’ vice president of Philadelphia hub operations. “We continue to invest in our Philadelphia hub, adding service to seven new trans-Atlantic destinations and more than a dozen domestic markets in the past two years, while continuing to enhance the customer experience through new and upgraded amenities like our forthcoming Flagship Lounge.”
The route arrives as Morocco’s tourism economy is seeing above-average growth, at an annual tourist arrival rate of 6 percent between 2000 and 2018, compared to 4 percent for overall global tourist arrivals during the same period. In January of this year, The Moroccan National Tourist Office (ONMT) announced that Morocco received 12.3 million tourists in 2018, up 8 percent from the previous year.
American Airlines has stated that it plans on partnering with Royal Air Maroc when it joins the Oneworld airline alliance in mid-2020. The partnership between the two airlines will allow for even more connections further into Africa to destinations such as Marrakech, Lagos, and Accra.
The airline has also added a year-round flight from its largest hub, Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW), to Ben-Gurion Airport (TLV) in Tel Aviv, Israel. The new route will serve local and connecting passengers, who will now be able to make one single layover stop instead of two and will operate three times per week. Israel saw a record-breaking number of tourists last year — with the number of tourist arrivals jumping 38 percent between 2016 and 2018 — while tourism revenue topped out at $6.3 billion, according to the country’s Tourism Ministry. Israel has a thriving technology industry, and the new route will help connect the market to tech cities within the U.S. such as Austin, Texas, and San Jose, California.
American Airlines continues to expand its network across Europe as well. With its summer 2020 launches, the airline has particularly focused on Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD), its midwest hub, and the strong local demand within the region for connections to Eastern Europe. The airline has added three new routes from Chicago O’Hare and will be the only U.S. carrier flying to Kraków John Paul II International Airport (KRK) in Poland, Václav Havel Airport (PRG) in Prague, Czech Republic, and Budapest Airport (BUD) in Hungary next summer. With these additions, American will also have more flights to Europe from Chicago O’Hare than any other carrier next summer.
“As Chicago’s airline of choice, we will continue to grow our network and add destinations that are important to our customers, team members, and the local communities in which they are a part of,” said Franco Tedeschi, vice president, Chicago, at American Airlines. “With the vibrant community of Eastern Europeans right in our backyard, we are proud to introduce these exciting new routes that connect Chicago and our neighbors to Eastern Europe and everything it has to offer.”
This content was created collaboratively by American Airlines and Skift’s branded content studio, SkiftX.