Postview of the Delta/LaGuardia announcement

I had a bit of a preview of the announcement for new Delta service from LaGuardia last night. The official release is out and it looks like the preview was accurate, but there are a bunch more routes also on offer coming up. The changes will happen in two waves, one in March and one in July.


Map from the awesome Red is phase 1, blue is phase 2.

Here’s how the schedules line up (numbers are new service only, not including existing frequencies):

Effective March 25, 2012:

  • LGA-ALB; 1x daily
  • LGA-BTV: 3x daily
  • LGA-BUF: 6x daily
  • LGA-DAY: 2x daily
  • LGA-DFW: 6x daily
  • LGA-GSO: 4x daily
  • LGA-MHT: 2x daily
  • LGA-MIA: 4x daily
  • LGA-NAS: 1x daily
  • LGA-ORF: 5x daily
  • LGA-RIC: 5x daily
  • LGA-ROC: 4x daily
  • LGA-RSW: 1x daily
  • LGA-SDF: 2x daily
  • LGA-SYR: 5x daily

Effective July 11, 2012:

  • LGA-BGR: 1x daily
  • LGA-BNA: 1x daily
  • LGA-CAE: 1x daily
  • LGA-CHO: 1x daily
  • LGA-CLE: 5x daily
  • LGA-CLT: 5x daily
  • LGA-DEN: 2x daily
  • LGA-GSP: 1x daily
  • LGA-IAD: 4x daily
  • LGA-IAH: 4x daily
  • LGA-ILM: 2x daily
  • LGA-IND: 1x daily
  • LGA-JAX: 1x daily
  • LGA-MCI: 1x daily
  • LGA-MKE: 3x daily
  • LGA-MSP: 1x daily
  • LGA-PHL: 4x daily
  • LGA-PIT: 6x daily
  • LGA-PWM: 1x daily
  • LGA-RDU: 1x daily
  • LGA-ROA: 1x daily
  • LGA-STL: 1x daily
  • LGA-YHZ: 2x daily
  • LGA-YOW: 3x daily
  • LGA-YUL: 5x daily

Not a whole lot of surprises there. I had forgotten about the Denver exemption to the perimeter rule so that means those aren’t such a big deal to add. As for Delta "attacking" other carriers, there are two ways to look at the situation. One is that they are going after the hubs of their competitors. Flights to DFW, MIA, CLT, PHL, CLE, DEN, IAH and IAD are all going after a hub from American Airlines, US Airways or United Airlines. And BUF, ROC, SYR & BTV are all strong JetBlue markets from JFK. But that doesn’t necessarily mean Delta is really attacking those airlines, especially with the frequencies they’re offering.

The other view is simply that they’re taking the LaGuardia slots and connecting the largest business markets they can to New York City. From that perspective the moves are completely rational and not so much attacks as a logical growth to the market. So there will be some competition on a number of the routes, but that is likely good for customers. Particularly in the IAH, CLE, MIA and DFW markets where competition has been more or less non-existent recently this competition will likely bring some fare discounting.

There will be losers, of course, with the changes as well. With many of the slots shifting to major business markets there will be fewer slots devoted to smaller markets. These are markets currently served by US Airways ex-LaGuardia that Delta does not have on the schedule:

  • LGA-ACK   
  • LGA-AVL   
  • LGA-BDL   
  • LGA-BWI   
  • LGA-CHS   
  • LGA-CMH   
  • LGA-ITH   
  • LGA-LEX   
  • LGA-MDT   
  • LGA-MVY   
  • LGA-PVD   

US Airways may keep some of these but odds are the connections for these customers are going to be worse.

Conspicuously they’re skipping service to Toronto. Maybe because WestJet is adding that one or maybe because they don’t see much business there (unlikely). But the 10 daily frequencies to Canada otherwise is a reasonably strong statement there.

Overall it is definitely a big shakeup in the market. The next year should be a lot of fun in the New York City aviation market.

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.


  1. Delta already has 5x/day to CMH so that’s safe. DL also already has AVL (1x/day) and CHS (4x/day) and LEX (1x/day). Wouldn’t shock me if they ran MVY/ACK runs on the weekend out of LGA…I believe that’s what US ran.

    As for the others, I can’t say I’m surprised in the least.

    1. I wasn’t certain about all the “cut” routes but I’m not surprised that some already exist. AVL only 1x is a bit of a cut, though not too surprising as it is a small market and there is some competition across the Hudson from United/Continental.

      And I’m not at all surprised to see cities getting cut. But it isn’t particularly good news for those markets.

  2. Thanks, Seth. I’m really excited about the LGA-IAH. Maybe that will put some pressure on UACO prices. If not, at least there are more direct options.

  3. I don’t think YYZ is conspicuous in its absence. YTO-NYC is already highly competitive, with 55 daily flights on 5 airlines (See, and on top of that Westjet is about to dump major capacity there, as you mentioned.

    On the other hand, YOW makes sense because it is much less competitive (only AC to LGA 3 times daily and CO to EWR 4 times daily) as evidenced by much, much higher fares (routinely $100-$200 more expensive than YYZ).

    It will be interesting to see DL increase its presence at YOW. Currently there are only 2 to 3 daily CRJ flights to DTW. They abandoned service to ATL after the merger. Pre-merger NW and DL also briefly tried service to MSP and CVG respectively.

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