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American Retaliates Against Frontier in Philadelphia

American bolsters some route offerings after Frontier recently added a batch of new flights.

American Airbus aircraft in Phoenix (Photo: AirlineGeeks | William Derrickson)

Airlines are known to be rather territorial, especially the major three carriers when it comes to other airlines expanding from their hubs. Back in 2023, Icelandair announced service from Detroit – a Delta hub – to Reykjavik in Iceland, just days later Delta announced flights on the same route that began a week before Icelandair’s flights did. When Icelandair and now defunct WOW Air announced flights from Dallas/Fort Worth, American Airlines jumped on the bandwagon and offered the same route from its hub.

Most airline retaliation isn’t that obvious and tends to be more subtle. On Feb. 7, 2024, Frontier Airlines announced a slew of new routes around the country, 10 of which were from its now expanding base in Philadelphia which will now see Frontier serving 39 nonstop destinations.

American Adds Capacity

Now, just over ten days later, as first noticed by Ishrion Aviation on X, American has increased frequencies on eight of the 10 cities Frontier plans on starting out of Philadelphia:

  • Kansas City will be increasing from two to four daily flights and will go from being a mix of regional and mainline to all mainline aircraft predominantly the Airbus A319.
  • Milwaukee will be increasing from two to four daily, on all regional jets, mostly the Embraer E175.
  • Portland, Maine will be going from three daily flights on all regional jets to four daily flights with three of them being on the mainline Airbus A319 and the fourth being on the Embraer E175.
  • St. Louis will all be going from two daily flights on all Airbus A319s to three daily A319 flights and a fourth daily flight operated by the Embraer E175.
  • Indianapolis will be going from four daily flights on a mix of regional and mainline aircraft, to six daily flights with half of them being mainline Airbus A319s.
  • Pensacola will be going from one to daily flights and will receive an upgrade of aircraft from the Embraer E175 to the Airbus A319.
  • Knoxville goes from three to four daily flights, with all being operated by regional jets like the Embraer E175, CRJ-900, or the Embraer E145.
  • Detroit will gain a fifth daily flight and will be operated by a mix of regional and mainline A319s depending on the day of the week.

All of these American Airlines route increases and aircraft upgrades take place in the first week of June 2024, just a few weeks after Frontier begins the flights on these exact routes.

Joey Gerardi


  • Joey Gerardi

    Joe has always been interested in planes, for as long as he can remember. He grew up in Central New York during the early 2000s when US Airways Express turboprops ruled the skies. Being from a non-aviation family made it harder for him to be around planes and would only spend about three hours a month at the airport. He was so excited when he could drive by himself and the first thing he did with the license was get ice cream and go plane spotting for the entire day. When he has the time (and money) he likes to take spotting trips to any location worth a visit. He’s currently enrolled at Western Michigan University earning a degree in Aviation Management and Operations.

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