Dumped by American, Steelers find new airline

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In April, American Airlines stuck a finger in the eye of America’s new pastime, telling six NFL franchises that the company no longer would provide charter services for their road games.

The Steelers disclosed Thursday that they have a new airline. Via Jill Beckman of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Steelers will use Miami Air International when the team travels in 2017.

In addition to the Steelers, the American also dumped the Dolphins, Ravens, Colts, Jaguars, and Cardinals. American will continue to service the Cowboys, Panthers, and Eagles.

A source told PFT in April that up to 20 teams could be facing loss of charter service, with United and Delta possibly joining American. There have been no subsequents reports or announcements indicating that United, Delta, or any other airlines had indeed stopped servicing NFL teams.

UPDATE 8:50 a.m. ET: According to the team, the Dolphins also have secured charter services with Miami Air for 2017.

UPDATE 9:02 a.m. ET: The Jaguars have made arrangements as well, but the team said that it does not publicize its private arrangements.

UPDATE 10:04 a.m. ET: The Colts also have made arrangements, but they also have chosen not to disclose them at this time.

24 responses to “Dumped by American, Steelers find new airline

  1. What is American Airline’s reason for deliberately losing business?
    Seems antithetical for an enterprise to reject long-term reliable flow of money.

    Anybody know?

  2. “What is American Airline’s reason for deliberately losing business?”

    I guess it probably has to do with staff and equipment at the locations they fly out of, they probably have no additional capacity at those locations.

    It’s not because they hate those teams, or the guys are behaving like Rock Stars

  3. “What is American Airline’s reason for deliberately losing business?”

    They’re getting out of the charter business claiming they need the aircraft for regular flights. The Cowboys, Eagles and Panthers will also have to find a new carrier it sounds like next year.

    But it’s quite strange they didn’t work out a deal with a different charter company to seamlessly take over this high-profile business. That would have avoided them getting a ton of negative press. Most people will read this as just another story on terrible airline customer service or even wonder if American is going under.

  4. The cities they kept are HUB cities. They have plenty of airplanes flying in and out of them. The cities they dumped had to have a plane specially flown in.

  5. One other reason is that it was more profitable to sell a flight to regular passengers than it was to do a charter. Add up all those flights, and it’s an easy decision for shareholders in an industry famous for bankruptcies and cost-cutting.

  6. texasrob65 says:
    Jul 14, 2017 9:31 AM
    The cities they kept are HUB cities. They have plenty of airplanes flying in and out of them. The cities they dumped had to have a plane specially flown in.

    That is not true. Miami and Phoenix are both American Airlines hub cities.

  7. Knowing the NFL, they probably didn’t want to pay. They probably thought that the airline should pay them for being known as the official airline of said teams.

  8. bobonit says:
    Jul 14, 2017 10:08 AM
    American will never dump the Cowboys their America’s team right??

    Well, American is based about 10 miles from the stadium, I don’t see them dumping the local team when they have almost half of DFW airport dedicated to their planes.

  9. I flew American recently and was generally not thrilled with the experience.

    Still better than Delta though; they lost my bag twice in a row.

    I would recommend JetBlue or Alaska to anyone who has the option to fly with them.

  10. Because it’s so much easier to throw a small person off a plane than a 300 lb lineman.

  11. US Airways used to be the Steelers charter company. When they merged and became American they pulled what little was left out of Pittsburgh all together. It wasn’t financially feasable to continue flying out of a hub to Pittsburgh, have all the preperations ready and lose that plane for an extended period when it could be used much more efficiently and cheaply on regular routes. It’s all about the $$. That’s why American left.

  12. If United and Delta follow suit then it wouldn’t surprise me if they are colluding to drive up prices. Ever since all the mergers of the big airlines prices have gone up and service has gone down because you only have a few choices. I’d laugh if Southwest starting getting the business. They probably fly into all the NFL cities.

  13. The Jags signed their deal with Spirit. That’s the company that charges extra fro everything including flotation devices should the plane go down over water.

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