Wow: Delta Will Fly From Boston To Athens & Tel Aviv

Wow: Delta Will Fly From Boston To Athens & Tel Aviv

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Delta Air Lines has just revealed two awesome new international routes out of Boston, and they’re already open for bookings.

Delta’s international expansion out of Boston

As of the summer of 2022, Delta plans to launch flights from Boston (BOS) to both Athens (ATH) and Tel Aviv (TLV).

In the past few years, Delta had plans to serve up to eight transatlantic routes out of Boston, including to Amsterdam, Dublin, Edinburgh, Keflavik, Lisbon, London, Paris, and Rome. With these two additional routes, the airline could have up to 10 transatlantic routes out of Boston by next summer (or perhaps even more — who knows what else is coming).

Let’s go over the details of the two routes.

Delta’s Boston to Athens route

As of May 27, 2022, Delta will launch a route between Boston and Athens. The route will operate with the following schedule:

DL240 Boston to Athens departing 6:55PM arriving 12:30PM (+1 day)
DL241 Athens to Boston departing 2:45PM arriving 7:15PM

The flight will operate 3x weekly, eastbound on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays, and westbound on Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. The flight will cover a distance of 4,755 miles, and is blocked at 10hr35min eastbound and 11hr30min westbound.

Delta will use an Airbus A330-300 for the route, featuring 293 seats, including 34 business class seats and 259 economy class seats.

This new route complements Delta’s seasonal service to Athens from both Atlanta and New York. No airline has flown nonstop between Boston and Athens in the past decade.

Delta will operate the Athens route with an Airbus A330-300

Delta’s Boston to Tel Aviv route

As of May 26, 2022, Delta will launch a route between Boston and Tel Aviv. The route will operate with the following schedule:

DL242 Boston to Tel Aviv departing 4:20PM arriving 9:35AM (+1 day)
DL243 Tel Aviv to Boston departing 11:50AM arriving 4:45PM

The flight will operate 3x weekly, on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays in both directions (presumably there’s some plane swapping happening in Tel Aviv with Delta’s other services). The flight will cover a distance of 5,491 miles, and is blocked at 10hr15min eastbound and 11hr55min westbound.

Delta will use an Airbus A330-900neo for the route, featuring 281 seats, including 29 business class seats, 28 premium economy class seats, and 224 economy class seats.

This new route complements Delta’s year-round service to Tel Aviv from New York. Delta will be going head-to-head against EL AL here, which has historically operated a route between Boston and Tel Aviv.

Delta will operate the Tel Aviv route with an Airbus A330-900neo

What’s the motivation for these routes?

There’s really not any guessing required here, it’s pretty evident what the motivation behind these routes is. American Airlines and JetBlue Airways have a new strategic partnership, whereby American plans to add long haul flights out of the Northeast, while JetBlue provides much of the feed.

Because of this partnership, American has recently launched flights from New York to both Athens and Tel Aviv. It sure seems like Delta feared that American might soon do the same in Boston, so Delta decided to beat American to the punch. Talk about a direct competitive response.

The Department of Justice is currently challenging the partnership between American and JetBlue, arguing it’s bad for competition. While there are some areas where I understand the DOJ’s logic, it sure seems to me like this partnership is good for competition in long haul markets. And American and JetBlue can certainly use the launch of these routes as an example of that.

This is a direct competitive response to American

Bottom line

As of the summer of 2022, Delta will be launching 3x weekly flights from Boston to both Athens and Tel Aviv. These are two awesome new routes for Boston flyers to have access to — Athens didn’t have a nonstop link to Boston, while Tel Aviv had service to Boston on EL AL.

This move by Delta is an obvious response to the partnership between American and JetBlue. I’m curious to see if American decides to replicate these routes as well, or if the airline continues to focus its long haul expansion on New York (I’m guessing the latter).

What do you make of Delta’s two new transatlantic routes from Boston?

(Tip of the hat to Zach Griff)

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  1. Shelby Cardoso

    We will see the return of ATL--TLV soon

  2. Benny

    While El Al indeed used to offer a direct flight from Tel Aviv to Boston, this line was discontinued in the early stages of the pandemic, and it is unclear if El Al has any plans on bringing it back.

  3. Michael

    JetBlue has lots of codeshares with international flag carriers which have routes out of Boston. American has always resented this, since it abandoned Logan as an international gateway after 9/11. I suspect a good part of the motivation for the AA/JetBlue tie-up was to divert some of that feed to American’s gateway at JFK.

  4. Errol

    Did american announce any international routes from Boston as yet? I think they are dropping the ball when it comes to route planning. They are trying to compete in jfk which already have a lot of European carriers. United is across the river. American should have looked at Boston and announced a lot of european routes which they would have have much competition. American biggest hurdle is that they don't have a solid product to...

    Did american announce any international routes from Boston as yet? I think they are dropping the ball when it comes to route planning. They are trying to compete in jfk which already have a lot of European carriers. United is across the river. American should have looked at Boston and announced a lot of european routes which they would have have much competition. American biggest hurdle is that they don't have a solid product to offer, delta has delta 1, United has Polaris. I know they have Kodiak and but that's a domestic thing. Not sure if people would pay and fly with them out of Boston. Is american management trying to create the largest low cost Airline in the world because it seems that is what they are doing. It is just a bigger american west/us airways airlines. No frills about it.

  5. Levi

    While one certainly doesn't have to be Jewish to want to go to TLV or Greek to go to ATH, New England has among the larger Jewish communities in the US and among the larger Greek communities, so there should be strong O&D demand in the summer (especially for visiting friends and relatives).

  6. C. Weston

    Just checked BOS - ATH

    Only 320,000 sky pesos one way business

    Hahahahahahaha!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. Anthony

      Always look for round trip on Delta, not one way. While still not good, I found a few 300K round trip (150K each way) in August. Same with JFK to ATH in August. Without a sale, the best you can expect is about 120K or so each way from the US to Europe on Delta metal these days. June/July seem to price out at 195K each way on Delta metal. 1 stop partner redemptions can be had for 120K each way pretty reliably.

  7. Laurin

    Something with the blocked times must have gotten wrong. BOS-ATH (eastbound) should be longer than BOS-TLV although it is around 700 miles shorter?

  8. 02nz

    They already serve quite a few destinations in Europe from BOS. In a way it's the same strategy they used in Seattle for transpacific routes - Boston is to the northeast of basically the entire US and is a logical connection point for Europe, plus it has a sizable O&D market.

  9. Antonio Pineda

    These are the greatest news EVER!! I flight to Athens 3 times per year and many of my Greek and none Greeks friends as well. It is very difficult to have to wait to transfer in Switzerland, Germany, France or Turkey to get there. They will be amazed with all the amount of passangers acquiring tickets. For sure I will be one of them. KUDOS TO DELTA for this great initiative.

  10. Greg

    Flown with Delta's hard as a rock dentist chair biz class seats

    Uncomfortable even for a domestic midcon

  11. NDG

    “Athens never had a non-stop like to Boston”

    Oh, it did. I flew the Olympic Airways ATH-BOS-JFK route many, many times in the 90s!

  12. Tim Dunn

    The motivation for Delta is not about ATH or TLV because neither AA or B6 was going to operate to those cities from BOS.
    Delta committed to building BOS as a hub and is taking advantage of opportunities to not just build its presence in the local BOS market to Asia but also to push more connections over BOS.
    Over the past few months, JetBlue has reduced the size of its operation in...

    The motivation for Delta is not about ATH or TLV because neither AA or B6 was going to operate to those cities from BOS.
    Delta committed to building BOS as a hub and is taking advantage of opportunities to not just build its presence in the local BOS market to Asia but also to push more connections over BOS.
    Over the past few months, JetBlue has reduced the size of its operation in Boston in order to build up NYC alongside AA. For the next couple months at least, DL is operating more flights from BOS than B6 although B6 still has more seats and produces more ASMs - but the gap between the two has never been smaller.
    Delta is taking advantage of B6' focus on NYC to build BOS. Given that the DOJ could win in its efforts to limit AA and B6's ability to compete in domestic markets, B6 might be allowing DL to build its presence to Europe.
    I believe there are some domestic markets that DL is adding as well.

  13. Alpha Golf

    BOS-TLV can be flown with one aircraft; LAX would need two.

  14. Maria Giannouli

    GREAT GREAT NEWS! Finally a nonstop flight from Boston to Athens, Greece after so many year! Well done Delta for taking the initiative. There are so many people in New England who finally will have a way to visit our amazing Greece and Greeks to visit the beautiful Boston. If you live in New England and you want to visit Greece with your family, check out here www.kidslovegreece.com

  15. Ben

    Great news with more and more US cities getting flights to TLV. But not clear why nobody has opened LAX to TLV - El Al flies 3x a week but it’s a huge market, bigger than Boston, Miami, DC, and Chicago who all have service.

    1. Eliyahu

      I have long been hopeful on this too. There is a massive Israeli population in LA, which makes this more frustrating. Potential explanation: there is already a lot of capacity ex SFO. Pure speculation on my part, but I suspect that the length of the flight, time change and distance makes scheduling this flight and deciding on a/c difficult

    2. Micah

      I too have pondered this. LA has a large Israeli-American and Jewish population (2nd in the US) and yet El Al has no direct competition. Considering LAX is also a hub for UA, DL and AA, one of them would have thrown their hat in the ring. My bet would be on either DL or AA since UA has the TLV-SFO route.

      On a side note, El Al is in massive trouble.

    3. ConcordeBoy

      While it's quite possible that any one of them could someday choose to open the route; it's always been fairly clear why they're reluctant to do so:

      (1) LAX requires multiple aircraft or less-than-daily routing with a single aircraft, either of which would likely have to be turned in TLV. Therefore, the benefit of a TLV flight would have to overcome the detriment of the inability to use that longhaul aircraft somewhere else. Possible, yes--...

      While it's quite possible that any one of them could someday choose to open the route; it's always been fairly clear why they're reluctant to do so:

      (1) LAX requires multiple aircraft or less-than-daily routing with a single aircraft, either of which would likely have to be turned in TLV. Therefore, the benefit of a TLV flight would have to overcome the detriment of the inability to use that longhaul aircraft somewhere else. Possible, yes-- but hadn't happened previously.

      (2) Ops from the LAX bypass feed from other significant US markets; and while all three airlines hub there, none of them command enough of LAX's massive O&D (at yield) to circumvent the opportunity-cost caused by this, on eastbound longhauls excepting London.

    4. Ben

      UA flies from SFO - flight time to TLV is almost same as LAX
      AA is starting from Dallas - flight time to TLV would be 1 hour less than LAX

      LY does serve LAX a few times a week but this is the only connection
      Also, there is a demand for connecting pax from San Diego and many parts of Central America especially Mexico

  16. shoeguy

    By adding BOS-TLV and BOS-ATH, DL has effectively shown the DoJ has no case against AA and B6. The NE Alliance spurs competition. What's telling here is that DL won't go daily on either route.

    1. Jake212

      @shoeguy

      Do you have a crystal ball? How do you know DL won’t go daily on either route?

    2. shoeguy

      Won't go daily to start, per the announcement, which puts each at 3 x weekly. Very conservative approach.

    3. michael healy

      Actually they have not. JetBlue has had codeshares with several international flag carriers in recent years. This arrangement has allowed them to serve Logan, tapping into the feed from B6. Many of these destinations would probably not be feasible based on O&D demand in Boston. The AA tieup will likely divert much if not most of that traffic to JFK. So many of those routes out of Logan will probably not survive; indeed that was...

      Actually they have not. JetBlue has had codeshares with several international flag carriers in recent years. This arrangement has allowed them to serve Logan, tapping into the feed from B6. Many of these destinations would probably not be feasible based on O&D demand in Boston. The AA tieup will likely divert much if not most of that traffic to JFK. So many of those routes out of Logan will probably not survive; indeed that was probably AA’s main motive for the alliance. AA has complained bitterly about the Logan gateway stealing “their” passengers. Of course, they all but abandoned Logan after 9/11, and those international carriers were merely stepping into the breach. But the upshot is a net loss for Boston travelers, who will increasingly be routed through New York.

  17. Jeff

    Way back in the day (late 90s/early 2000s) BOS did have service to ATH on Olympic using A340s. Nothing since then though.

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Eliyahu

I have long been hopeful on this too. There is a massive Israeli population in LA, which makes this more frustrating. Potential explanation: there is already a lot of capacity ex SFO. Pure speculation on my part, but I suspect that the length of the flight, time change and distance makes scheduling this flight and deciding on a/c difficult

Ben

Great news with more and more US cities getting flights to TLV. But not clear why nobody has opened LAX to TLV - El Al flies 3x a week but it’s a huge market, bigger than Boston, Miami, DC, and Chicago who all have service.

michael healy

Actually they have not. JetBlue has had codeshares with several international flag carriers in recent years. This arrangement has allowed them to serve Logan, tapping into the feed from B6. Many of these destinations would probably not be feasible based on O&D demand in Boston. The AA tieup will likely divert much if not most of that traffic to JFK. So many of those routes out of Logan will probably not survive; indeed that was probably AA’s main motive for the alliance. AA has complained bitterly about the Logan gateway stealing “their” passengers. Of course, they all but abandoned Logan after 9/11, and those international carriers were merely stepping into the breach. But the upshot is a net loss for Boston travelers, who will increasingly be routed through New York.

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