American Airlines has announced that they plan to stop flying in and out of Kalamazoo in October, WOODTV reports.

The airline will cut flights to a total of 15 smaller airports including Kalamazoo-Battle Creek, but WOODTV, USA TODAY, and US NEW & WORLD REPORT only had three other cities which were,

Sioux City, Iowa; New Haven, Connecticut; and Springfield, Illinois

They also all say that some of the other cities the airline is leaving, they are the only airline that flies into that airport, which will make it harder for a lot of people to travel.  Although the hope is that as we re-bound from COVID-19, the airline would re-add those flights.  That may or may not happen since the airline is waiting until October to dump those flights, because as of September 30th, a federal requirement to serve those smaller airports expires.

WOODTV says the airline officially blamed the departure from the 15 airports because of low demand due to the coronavirus pandemic.  Chances are they wanted to cancel those flights earlier, but to receive the tax-payer paid bailout that was created in March, the airlines had to keep flights to smaller towns through September 30, 2020.

The Kalamazoo-Battle Creek Airport Director, Craig Williams was hopeful in a statement to WOODTV,

“AZO is very much a business focused market. It will take the confident return to normal operations by the area’s business community to fully recover. The move by American is disappointing, but we are confident of their commitment to AZO and their return in November.”

I like the optimism and hope Craig is correct.