Yesterday, American Airlines announced the planned launch of three new (seasonal) routes – from Philadelphia to Budapest and Prague, and from Chicago to Venice. Given my connection with the area, the two routes from Philadelphia caught my attention.
Both of the routes from Philadelphia will operate daily between May 4, 2018 and October 27, 2018, and American Airlines plans to use Boeing 767-300s on the flights.
American Airlines Philadelphia to Budapest and Prague
The Philadelphia to Budapest flight will depart at 6:25PM, arriving at 9:35AM the following day. The return flight will depart Budapest at 11:35AM, and arrive back in Philadelphia at 4:00PM.
The second of the two routes will depart Philadelphia at 6:30PM and arrive in Prague at 9:05AM the next day. It will stay on the ground for a bit more than two hours, departing Prague at 11:30AM and arriving in Philadelphia at 3:10PM.
From Zero to Three Routes from Budapest to the US
Currently, the only transatlantic service out of Budapest is a seasonal link to Toronto by Air Canada Rouge. As for a connection to the United States, there hasn’t been one since the exit of Delta Air Lines in 2011 and the following demise of Malev in 2012.
However, just a bit more than a month ago, LOT from Poland announced that it would be starting transatlantic flights out of Budapest. The airline plans to operate routes to New York (4 x week) and Chicago (2 x week) with its 787-8 aircraft – both of them starting in the beginning of May 2018.
As such, starting in May 2018, Budapest will go from zero to three routes to the United States. At least for the “summer” season. After that, two should still remain, since LOT plans to operate its flights year-round.
Yet Another Seasonal Transatlantic Route Out of Prague
As for Prague, the airport currently has no year-round transatlantic service either. However, there are some seasonal routes. Air Transat operates connects the city with Montreal and Toronto, while Air Canada Rouge operates on the Toronto to Prague route as well.
The only route out of Prague to the United States at this point is Delta’s seasonal service to New York JFK.
Given the relatively limited direct transatlantic connectivity out of the two airports, it’s nice to see a new airline entering the markets. While they’re just seasonal routes, they should still be a very welcome addition to both travelers and plane spotters at the two airports.