Tuesday, July 23, 2024
North America’s regional resilience

North America’s regional resilience

Whether in North America, Latin America, Europe or Asia, American Airlines has spent the past 75 years building its operation into a position where it is ready to move you or your cargo.

Providing more than 100 million pounds of weekly cargo lift to key destinations, from flowers and fruit to life saving medicine, American Airlines Cargo utilises its two hubs – Dallas Fort Worth (DFW) and Miami (MIA) to serve the world.

These are two of the carrier’s highest traffic cargo hubs. A significant proportion of shipments touch either hub, with DFW being home to American’s headquarters and with the most flight connections, while MIA is a key gateway for Latin American traffic that continues domestically within the U.S. and across to many global destinations.

“From our perspective, as a North America based carrier, we’ve seen a lot of resilience in this region. We have the benefit of moving a lot of cargo even just within the domestic U.S. market, thanks to our network. But even at the beginning of the pandemic, our lanes between the U.S. and Europe were always in high demand. Those routes, as well as up from Latin America, remain strong,” Indy Bolina, Head of Global Sales at American Airlines Cargo, said.

READ: American Airlines Cargo partnership delivers humanitarian supplies to Haiti

Facilities and focus

Whatever cargo customers need moving, be it perishables, high value, dangerous goods, pets and animals, life science, temperature control, or more, American Airlines Cargo delivers customised services. 

With its diverse range of facilities, the carrier aims to provide a suite of products for every occasion. Out of its Philadelphia site, the airline runs what it sees as the jewel in the crown of its healthcare offering, supporting life sciences that needs to move long distances swiftly, efficiently and in specific conditions.

“Our facility in Philadelphia is state-of-the-art,” Bolina explained. “Specifically as it relates to pharmaceutical and healthcare handling, we are strategically placed to support the Northeast pharmaceutical corridor of the U.S.” 

“Our entire station in Philadelphia is CEIV Pharma certified, along with our hubs at DFW and MIA, and we are currently in the process of accepting new fleets of temperature controlled ULD container options from multiple partners,” he continued.

Life Sciences, healthcare and pharmaceuticals are a priority area for American Airlines Cargo. While Philadelphia remains strategically important, the carrier has strong capability in these verticals across multiple geographies and have some exciting developments coming soon. 

“You’ll see us continue developing innovative customer solutions in this space utilising our world class facilities,” Bolina added. 

These facilities enable the movement of perishable and temperature-controlled commodities which are key for American Airlines Cargo in and out of the U.S..

“We see a lot of flowers and fresh fruit from Latin America, and salmon coming from Europe via LHR continue to move in strong volumes,” Bolina explained. “Out of the U.S., American moves a lot of asparagus and other fresh produce, along with pharmaceuticals and Dangerous Goods.”

Simplifying the booking process

 American Airlines Cargo has embraced the potential of digital innovation through its movement into eBooking platforms, giving greater access to the carrier’s network around the globe. 

While operating thousands of monthly flights between key regional destinations, American Airlines Cargo’s move onto online booking platforms has allowed it to continue meeting the unique needs of its customers by providing users of the platform with direct connections from more than dozens of origins to established and emerging markets.

“To simplify the booking process and meet our customers’ needs, American Airlines Cargo offers several digital booking options including via our website: aacargo.com, third party booking platforms and customer direct API connections,” Bolina said.

“Around 50% of our bookings are made online. That share of online bookings has grown in recent years and we expect that growth trend to carry on as we continue to enhance digital solutions to make it easy for customers to do business with us,” Bolina cotinued.

READ: American Airlines rides wave of modernisation within the airfreight industry

Seasonal peaks and schedule changes

The market in a state of correction due to a number of macro-economic factors, such as rising inflation and interest rates, as well as increases in long-haul widebody capacity.

Despite the changing dynamics, compared with  2019 – the last “normal year” in the industry, American Airlines Cargo sees itself in a “good place and performing well.”

“Looking at our own business, our expanded network this year has opened many more markets with increased capacity, allowing us to say “yes” to more customers,” Bolina said.

“Developing those new relationships where we may not have been able to accommodate them in different market conditions is positive,” Bolina added.

To build on this, American Airlines Cargo is braced for some schedule changes, continuing the expansion the airline saw over the summer.

Fresh from adding more than 400 widebody flights per month over the summer, compared to summer 2022, American Airlines Cargo is looking at multiple trans-Atlantic widebody routes that are now year-round rather than seasonal.

“We always welcome more widebody capacity on popular routes between the U.S. and Europe, particularly because a lot of that traffic continues within the domestic U.S,” Bolina stated. “We will have more announcements to come regarding our new winter schedule.”

Picture of Edward Hardy

Edward Hardy

Having become a journalist after university, Edward Hardy has been a reporter and editor at some of the world's leading publications and news sites. In 2022, he became Air Cargo Week's Editor. Got news to share? Contact me on Edward.Hardy@AirCargoWeek.com

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