American Airlines is expected to announce at least a handful of new international routes tomorrow. Who doesn’t love a bit of speculation, so let’s go ahead and make our guesses!
American will reveal new international flights
United Airlines is known for posting teaser videos prior to announcing new international routes, typically featuring Patrick Quayle, United’s SVP of Global Network Planning and Alliances.
It looks like American Airlines wants in on the action, as the airline has just published a teaser video about an announcement that’s expected on Thursday, August 17, 2023. In fairness, American doesn’t have nearly as many opportunities as United to get creative with this, given how small American’s long haul network is by comparison.
The airline has posted a teaser video on Instagram, which contains some clues (and a wink from Brian Znotins, American’s SVP of Network Planning). Okay, so let’s forget for a moment how incredibly strange the whole video is, and make our best guesses.
As noted by @IshrionA, there are five boarding passes in the video, each containing an airport code, plus a destination that’s written as a clue:
- American will fly from DFW to “somewhere hot”
- American will fly from PHL to “somewhere fun”
- American will fly from PHL to “somewhere new”
- American will fly from PHL to “somewhere glitzy”
- American will fly from ORD to “somewhere classic”
Beyond that, I notice a few more clues in the video:
- There’s a sticker with both the Italian flag and the French flag
- While there’s a sticker with the Spanish and Swiss flags, I wouldn’t necessarily assume those are direct clues, as the American flag also shows
- The number 22,391 is written on a piece of paper, and I’m guessing that’s the combined distance of all of these routes
Furthermore, below is some speculation and clues that @xJonNYC has shared about the possible destinations.
My guesses as to American’s new destinations
Here are a few assumptions I’m going to make:
- I imagine most of these routes will be launched in 2024, and will likely be summer seasonal routes.
- I believe most of these will be actual long haul international flights, and not the short haul international flights that American so frequently adds to Mexico and the Caribbean
- Four routes will likely be to destinations that American currently serves out of other airports, or has previously served; that’s because only one route is being referred to as being to “somewhere new”
Let me share my guesses, roughly in order of confidence:
- I feel very strongly that American will launch a Philadelphia to Nice route; that makes sense in terms of the French flag, plus “somewhere glitzy”
- I think the Chicago to “somewhere classic” route could very well be to Venice or Prague; this is a route American has operated in the past, but not in the summer of 2023, so I suspect it will resume
- I think a Philadelphia to Berlin route is very likely, and it could be under the “somewhere new” or “somewhere fun” category; we’ve seen other carriers expand transatlantic service to Berlin, and it matches the emojis in the above social media post
- I think the “somewhere hot” clue could be one of two things; either it’s a Dallas to Barcelona flight, or it’s a trick, and refers to a Dallas to Helsinki flight (with the hot reference referencing how Helsinki’s airport code is “HEL”)
- The “somewhere fun” out of Philadelphia is stumping me… maybe Stockholm, based on the Scandinavia clue, or maybe Naples (if the airline flies to Prague out of Chicago, rather than to Venice, in which case it would explain the Italian flag?)
According to gcmap.com, the total distance of Chicago to Prague, Dallas to Barcelona, and Philadelphia to Berlin, Philadelphia to Naples, and Philadelphia to Nice, is 22,396 miles. That puts us within five miles of the 22,391 miles written on the napkin (and that could just be a function of which source is being used to calculate distance). Hmmm…
On Thursday, American will be announcing new international routes. The hints so far suggest that there will be five routes, including three from Philadelphia, one from Chicago, and one from Dallas. There are some interesting clues, though it’s possible I could be on the totally wrong track.
Anyone want to take a guess as to what the new routes are?