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US Threatens British Airline Ban  
User currently offlineNYC Int'l From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 1024 times:

The US is threatening to block British airlines
from flying to some of America's biggest cities. A
hearing in the House of Representatives made the
threat Tuesday as it tried to breathe new life into
talks on an open skies agreement between the
two countries.

There has been stalemate for months over U.S.
proposals. U.K. officials have rejected them,
claiming the move would effectively grant U.S.
carriers greater access to Europe while effectively
keeping British airlines out of the US domestic

U.S. transportation officials have insisted that the
U.K. increase access for U.S. air carriers flying to
the U.K.

House lawmakers are now threatening to ban
Britain's supersonic Concorde from flying to the

They also threatened to renew a push for
legislation, introduced late last year, that would
revoke Britain's access to O'Hare International
Airport in Chicago and John F. Kennedy
International Airport in New York City as well as
terminate existing air-service agreements
between the U.S. and U.K. The changes would
occur if new flight agreements aren't reached
within six months of passage of the bill.

"It's extraordinary that our negotiators went over
there (last month) and were snubbed by the
British government," said House Transportation
Chairman Bud Shuster, R-Pa.

U.S. Airways officials maintained that the current
U.S.-U.K. air-services agreement, called Bermuda
II, is one of the most restrictive air-use pacts the
U.S. has with a developed aviation partner.

For example, airline passengers can no longer fly
directly between London and Pittsburgh ever
since British Airways, after 14 years of service,
discontinued its direct service between the two
cities last October.

U.S. Airways Group has offered to restore that
service but is prohibited from doing so because
Pittsburgh is not designated as a gateway point
to London for U.S. airlines. Bermuda II bars the
U.S. from selecting any additional U.S. cities for
direct service to and from London.

"British Airways abandoned the people of
Pittsburgh and western Pennsylvania and yet the
U.K. government has the arrogance at the
eleventh hour to ask what we are `prepared to
pay,' " said Stephen Wolf, chairman of US
Airways in Arlington, Va.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair appealed to
lawmakers in a letter sent just before Tuesday's
hearings, saying that his country is willing to
resume talks "to strike a balanced deal" that
would reinstate direct service between London
and Pittsburgh.

But, he also said that could only happen if U.S.
federal authorities approve a code-sharing
agreement between British Airways and AMR
Corp.'s American Airlines (AMR).

Frederick W. Smith, who heads FedEx Corp.
(FDX), criticized lawmakers for sacrificing
negotiations over passenger air travel at the
expense of cargo air carriers such as itself.

"Air cargo liberalization talks are being unduly
subordinated to the demands of passenger
carriers," Smith said.

The package delivery service recently pulled out
of Prestwick Airport, a move
characterized by many as political. Smith
dismissed the charge as inaccurate, saying that
the Prestwick operations have run at a loss over
the last ten years

42 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
User currently offlineDavid L From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 9523 posts, RR: 42
Reply 1, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 701 times:

Polititians, eh?  

User currently offlinePilot1113 From United States of America, joined Aug 1999, 2333 posts, RR: 12
Reply 2, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 669 times:

Basically stated in the topic.

Not gonna happen.

- Neil Harrison

User currently offlineNYC Int'l From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 672 times:

First, I know that BA has considerable fluff with UK governments both Tory and Labour but why is TB insisting on the AA/BA deal to be approved before any real progress to be made? If these Congressmen do succeed in restricting or terminating UK airline service to the US and conversly US airline service to the UK(I assume that the UK authorities would retaliate) this could do quite a bit of harm to the UK carriers, more so than to the US carriers, simply because of the size of the domestic US market where american carriers can partly recoup some of their losses.

Second, You would think that a deal would have been workedout in no time because of the close relationship between Bill Clinton and Bill Clinton Jr. er... Tony Blair, yeah thats what I meant. Tony Blair. That guy is about as substantive as plastic wrap, but that another discussion for another day and another board, However it is still a bit suprising they are not close to a framework for a deal and that rhetoric as reached the levele that we have seen over the several months.


User currently offlineDeltaAir From United States of America, joined May 1999, 1094 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 656 times:

The US is holding the cards in this case, espically since the US isn't going to back down this time. The House has already approved the ban on the British Airways Concorde flights if it becomes necessary. The only airports BA would be allowed to fly to is JFK, ORD, and LAX, once a day. The way I understand it is that AF would be the only one allowed to operate the Concorde and that BA would have to surrender rights to theirs, for some legal mumbo-jumbo.

If Britain doesn't back down, then it will be the end to British Airways & Virgin Atlantic as we know it today.

By that time Tony Blair will see that they have to give in and if it means destroying British Airways, then so be it.

User currently offlineAvion From Bouvet Island, joined May 1999, 2205 posts, RR: 7
Reply 5, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 651 times:

What will the EU do? Will they also ban US airlines from flying into Paris, Frankfurt etc.


User currently offlineDeltaAir From United States of America, joined May 1999, 1094 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 654 times:

They can't, if they do then the US will retaliate again blocking all Concordes and all flights to Europe in and out of the US. I don't believe Britain has the power to make a decision like that.

User currently offlineD L X From United States of America, joined May 1999, 11155 posts, RR: 52
Reply 7, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 655 times:


Do you know what they all have in common? They all have nonstops to London by one or more British airlines. Many of these cities have more than daily service. Hell, JFK has a frickin shuttle practically. Did any of these complaining brits ever stop and realize that they fly so much more of the seats to the UK than US airlines do?

I think it is high time for the US to put its foot down.

Yes, it is an election year, so the people involved are being more vocal than they normally would, but I think this actually will happen. They're just being vocal to make sure they get the credit for their actions come election day.

Send me a PM at http://www.airliners.net/aviation-forums/sendmessage.main?from_username=NULL
User currently offlineTimeForFlight From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 267 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 642 times:

To my knowledge, I remember that the US and UK signed an agrrement allowing unrestricted flights for 2 US carriers and 2 UK carriers to each major UK hub (Gatwick, Heathrow, Manchester, etc.). If anyone knows the name of this agreement, please tell me as I have forgotten and cannot find it anywhere. It is rather strange however, that the UK wants the US to approve a code-share alliance between BA and AA, considering 1, they have had one (at least in the past... lots of controversy and scandal created in that wehn they attempted to put VS out of business but caught got and sued big time). In addition, they cover each others routes quite often and any alliance would do nothing at all to help either airline.
If the US wants to block Uk airlines from flying into major airports, I'd expect to see a few things... They'd be 1) Other Us airlines trying to get a quick buck and fill in slots and LHR and LGW, even MAN. 2) Look for Asian or other European carriers to fly 2 leg trips from their hubs - hub - London, London - US. This isnt covered int he pact and allwos Asian carriers to take advantage of European and American travelers. 3) Expect BA and VS to tighten up competition and head elsewhere. Last I checked, VS was trying to fly to O'Hare. If they cant do that, look for Branson to start a US carrier (which he has already considered doing and still wants to do) to fly to such destinations as the Bahamas or Mexico and have daily flights out of both countries... maybe even Canada.
No matter waht happens, we will not see the demise of either BA or VS (which is my favorite airline). BA flies to many other destinations (international and domestic) and is too large to be taken down. VS may seem small, but they have tons of backing behind them and will not go out without a bang. VS has many potential operations and I can't see them going out anytime soon.

User currently offlineFlytime From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 644 times:

Who will suffer if this mess is not sorted out?

The passengers.

Why do these politicians have to make such a bloody mountain out of everything.

BTW. Don't think Tony Blair is such a pushover. He will stab Clinton in the back, just like he has stabbed the British public in the back. He has not kept any pledges he made before being elected. He certainly lives up to his name "Phoney Tony"

Beware Bill. Take care of your back.

User currently offlineAcvitale From United States of America, joined Aug 2001, 922 posts, RR: 11
Reply 10, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 643 times:

The British cannot go to the EU on this as it would open LOndon and the UK up to all EU airlines too... Wouldn' that be funny...

User currently offlineNYC Int'l From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 641 times:

Should anything negetive result from this might we see other major Eurocarriers inceasing their frequiences to the US from their hubs (CDG,FRA,AMS, ect.) and to the UK from their hubs to try to gain from the hole that would be created?

Do carriers in EU countries have the right to fly to FROM the any EU country to countries outside the EU? Or is this restricted to within the EU? I know there are a bunch of foreign owned airlines that have set up in stansted, many of them owned by other major EU airlines.



User currently offlineQaddafi From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 637 times:

What is this, 1933?

Mercantilism is a failure as an economic system. It sickens me to see comments like "yeah its high time the US put its foot down". This kind of action (a suspension of flights) will be devastating to airlines on both sides of the Atlantic, not to mention world commerce in general.

BTW, do you really think with the summer season approaching that the airlines involved will accept such amazing revenue losses when they could be making $$$$ transporting planeloads of fat Americans to fabulous, exotic England??

What do you think is going to happen when Mr. and Mrs Smith discover their little jaunt to London is cancelled.

Let's hope COOLER heads prevail.

User currently offlineLH423 From Canada, joined Jul 1999, 6501 posts, RR: 54
Reply 13, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 636 times:

This is a BIG situation for two reasons:
1. The UK and the US are two of the closest countries in the world, but both are stubborn. Look at us feisty Brits, we fought you guys TWICE and STILL lost. Americans are steadfast, and British are stubborn, so between the two this makes for a very sticky situation.

2. The UK and the US are two of the biggest trade partners with defence, aviation, food (minus beef  ), etc. This could just be the start of something bigger, that could end up much worse than simple aviation rights.


« On ne voit bien qu'avec le cœur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux » Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
User currently offlineIainhol From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks ago) and read 642 times:

DLX how many US airlines fly to London?? A lot more then UK airlines fly to the US. The US is so large so there has to be many flights. Also the percentage of Brits flying to the US is much higher then the Americans flying to the UK. Also the British airlines can fill the seats something the American airlines are strugleing doing. This will not happen the US and the UK are to good friends and if they did the UK would do exaclty the same to the US airlines can you imagen getting on an AA 767 and finding yourself at Prestwick or Exeter rather then LHR?

User currently offlineAcvitale From United States of America, joined Aug 2001, 922 posts, RR: 11
Reply 15, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks ago) and read 636 times:

The point is total flights... Even adding all the US carriers together the two British carriers fly more overall flights, With more overall capacity and give back zippo...

As for any flying between the US and UK if the ban starts that includes all US/UK flying...

To the other poster...

Nice time for the Smiths to visit Australlia.. Olympics and all, How about Asia, Mexico, Caribbean, etc..

With our politicians It will make the Boston Tea Party seem tame.. "Remember the Alamo" will become "Remember Heathrow"

User currently offlineDavid L From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 9523 posts, RR: 42
Reply 16, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks ago) and read 630 times:

And what's wrong with Prestwick? Oh, yeah... fair enough.

Er... lovely scenery and golf courses though.

User currently offlineDeltaAir From United States of America, joined May 1999, 1094 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (14 years 4 months 4 weeks ago) and read 628 times:

777s to Stansted or Prestwick, I can see it happening if BA doesn't stand down. American airlines can survive because of domestic flights, but the British can't. Anyone else see who is holding the cards?

User currently offlineDavid L From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 9523 posts, RR: 42
Reply 18, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 628 times:

This isn't a leading question, I'm just curious to know how this compares to the US-Japan setup, for example.

The trouble with giving a one-for-one deal is that sooner or later one airline will pull out if there isn't enough capacity. In the last few years that Prestwick was Scotland's only gateway to North America, the only airlines flying the routes were Air Canada, Wardair, Northwest, a couple of other US/Canadian charters, Flying Tigers/FedEx, etc. Not a British airline in sight.

User currently offlineJet Setter From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 632 times:

Look at the flipside of the coin,
If the US ban UK airlines from flying from London to most US cities do you think we will say. That's fine, and continue to allow AA, UA, CO, NW, US and TW landing rights in the UK. If the US make some stupid move as is being discussed here, the UK government will reciprocate. Nobody would benefit from such action, UK airlines would be hurt and the US carriers wouldn't get what they want (and would probably be banned from the UK) The main people to be hurt would be the passengers, Including the many in US cities who would lose out on Business/Leisure links with the UK, How many million Brits visit Orlando annually?

However, people are talking like this is a foregone conclusion. This situation will never arise, so I'm not losing any sleep over it!

This is an empty threat in the negotiations and I don't feel we should be taking it too seriously


User currently offlineKLM 777 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 623 times:

And who makes revenue on all those American tourists (44 million) that visit the UK annually? You guessed it: BRITAIN!!

Who will lose out more is anybody's guess but the UK stands to lose much more not only in the lost airfares but in the loss of the billions and billions that US Tourists and Businessmen bring in every year.

You're argument is pathetic....because all parties would lose under that scenario, US Airlines should eat sh*t and allow the hegemony of BA/VS??!

That really doesn't make sense.



User currently offlineVA From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 623 times:

First of all, those red neck, war happy, senetors and congressmen in Washington are useless. They need to get over their little, "we are the US we are better than everyone" ideas. You can't call for Clinton to Nuke BA, they don't know much about airlines, keep out. They are more upset that a country fought for what they wanted and not rolled over like other countries. They can say anything, but old Bill Clinton won't do anything really. He knows what is really at stake here. He knows that if flights break down between the US and Britian it is not just the end of flights, it is the end of business between the two. Just think of all those businessmen that can't get their flight to London, and miss there meeting. Many businesses would be up the creek, and having to transfer to Britian from Frankfurt, etc. That is not the only industry that would suffer. Yanks are the number one tourist to London, and without British people in Florida, and California, and even Boston, tourism will take a hit on both sides.

People automatically think that Bermuda 2 (the current agreement) is unfair, well in some views it is, in others it is not. 2=2. Two British airlines, for two american airlines. Adds up to me. The question I have is if AA or UA wanted the Pittsburgh or any other route, could they get it? That is fair. Its not BA or Britians fault that AA or UA won't start more flights to Britian.

Both Virgin and BA will get threw any bans, I doubt they would last long anyway. VA is strong and BA has more than just the U.S.

One last thing, banning Concorde. This would be sad, and stupid. OK its noisy, ok it polutes, but so do the 1000's of old 727's (nothing against them). Still some jelousy over who got to the SST first???? They will only be around for around 5 more yrs. Leave them alone, they are beautiful aircraft. What would all the movie stars do (j/k)??

I doubt any of this will even happen, so no need for it this really. Would be interesting to see though.


By the way, I expect much negative talk about this post. Bring it on. I like a good conversation! Its good to get some views from the otherside of the Pond, even though I am living in the US at the moment.

User currently offlineKLM 777 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 22, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 615 times:

Good Lord! Bring it on eh?

Next I will be hearing how this debate is caused by latent resentment by the British over their defeat in the Revolutionary War!

I withdraw...I know nothing of the subject so I will stop posting.
I do however hope someone more knowledgeable will be able to refute your nonsense.

By your logic the US Government should just shove its thumb up its ass waiting for UA and AA to start service to PIT? Not only is this impossible given current slot controls, but why would they want to provide feed for a competitior?
BA screwed the people of Pittsburgh well enough but they wont get away with it.

User currently offlineJet Setter From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 615 times:

Well KLM 777, Thankyou for your swift response to my posting!

I mentioned Orlando to demonstrate a hell of a lot of British people visit the USA. Saying the UK benefits from US tourists means nothing, the USA makes revenue from UK tourists. The point I was trying to make is that if British tourists/businessmen cannot get to America, then American business will lose out. I would guess that more Brits visit the US than Vice Versa, look at all the chaters flying into Orlando every week, there aren't any coming the other way - that's where my argument came from - there are a lot more businesses involved than just airlines. Also, what about the impact on US airports?

I concede BA serves far more US destinations from London than US carriers. This is because London is BA's base, and as we all know airlines always have extensive routes from their hubs, and for BA this includes US flights. For the US airlines, their London services almost exclusively originate at their hubs.
This is why BA/Virgin will always have more flights to the US than American carriers do. AA will fly LHR-ORD, but LHR-SEA wouldn't make sense. Continental serves its EWR, IAH and CLE hubs but would never fly from Phoenix to Gatwick.

I hope this demonstrates why US carriers will never operate the same number of flights/routes to the UK as BA/VS.

As for your insults, you've never met me and you don't know me. I am assuming you are new to the forum, Is it really fair to judge someone on what they have said in a few sentences.

My argument insulted nobody and your reaction to it showed something of a lack of maturity, to someones opinions about something that will almost certainly never happen.

Have a nice day

User currently offlineTimeForFlight From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 267 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (14 years 4 months 3 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 611 times:

Who has a hub at PIT? They should be responsible for providing a flight to London, but I dont think anyone has a hub there, therefore PIT doesnt deserve any flights to London... How hard is it to drive or catch a flight to Philadelphia and fly out of there? Not very, so shutup about PIT.
Now, speaking of hubs, BNA really needs one. American Airlines had a hub in BNA (Nashville) with daily flights to and from LGW, however, they pulled out and now have about 20 flights a day if that) from what was once over 100.
Southwest is very busy in BNA, but they need a hub terribly. So many airlines fly there and none seem to take BNA seriously, except Southwest. Thanks Southwest, you're awesome. BNA has the potential to have daily intertnational flights, and even though all this stuff about flight cancellations won't happen, if it did, I can see BNA become big once again.
Don't worry, you won't miss much if this were to happen. Maybe Americans would see more of the world... Theres still Qantas, JAL, China Airlines, etc.
Don't worry.

25 KLM 777 : This whole row started when US AIRWAYS (WHO HAS A LARGE HUB AT PIT) was denied the right to begin serving PIT-LGW after BA dropped the service. With a
26 Ss278 : The stalemate has been going on for years. The British are primarily out to protect BA, and to hell with everyone else. They are probably the best neg
27 Matt D : One would have more luck trying to squeeze water out of a rock then they would getting the US and Europe to agree on ANYTHING airline related
28 Avion : for NYCIntl Yes european union carriers can operate flights from another eu country to an outside eu country. For example BA is allowed to fly Paris-T
29 D L X : Round two: fight! First off, TimeForFlight, where are you from? US Airways' largest hub is in Pittsburgh, and it's not like PIT and PHL are right next
30 Avion : But the us airlines are allowed to offer 100 flights daily to Gatwick? Or is there also a limited number for flights to Gatwick? If London is you fina
31 Post contains images D L X : Sure, now that the rail link is in at Gatwick, it's not so bad a destination even compared to Heathrow. The issue is that Heathrow offers connections
32 Avion : Can you imagine a passenger flying with from New York to Delhi with BA with a stop in LHR. Would this passenger change the airline in LHR? This would
33 KLM 777 : Your point is irrelevant. Load factors out of LHR are a consistent 80-90% for all airlines that serve it. Not so for Gatwick. The reason for this is t
34 Avion : I think airlines should be able to do business wherever they would like to. No matter what country. Avion
35 Acvitale : I am taking a backseat further except to correct errors or factually incorrect statements... Fact... All US/UK air travel requires US and UK approval.
36 Acvitale : While the US Japan set up is very restrictive it is also inherintly a little more fair. The US and Japan have 1 for 1 on flights... While the US carri
37 David L : OK, thanks. As I said, I wasn't trying to make a point - I was genuinely curious and I'd agree that, in principle, a one for one deal makes sense. But
38 Avion : The UK will not ban US airlines and the US will not ban UK airlines. Neither nation would be stupid enough to this. Both nations are too much linked.
39 Acvitale : How do figure the Uk can get the EU in on this fiasco. The UK already critisized the EU over the eact same issues when the EU wanted open skies within
40 Avion : And i tell you neither country will do this. This is to stupid. There are to much links between the two countries. And the UK is not Japan. The UK ca
41 Acvitale : Agreed on one point, Any airline should be able to fly anywhere. That is exactly what this is about. As to not seeing a block of UK service.. Well tha
42 DeltAirlines : They might not eliminate service, but they might do a equal competition thing. For example, BOS (when DL starts BOS-LGW) Delta: 1 flight (767-300 ER o
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