United Makes More Flight Cuts at Cleveland, Business Travelers Upset

clevelandBusiness travelers in Cleveland are hunkering down for more travel time and higher fares, as United Airlines (www.united.com) draws down its hub there and trims more flights.

Cleveland, a former Continental Airlines hub, hasn't fared well after that airline's merger with United, which previously announced a list of 39 destinations to be eliminated for nonstop service.

Now United has added Baltimore and Albany to that list, effective June 5, according to an article in the Cleveland Plain Dealer. The newspaper said schedules on the airline's Web site this past weekend showed that with the new schedule, travelers seeking to fly from Baltimore to Cleveland will have to take two flights with a connection in either Chicago O'Hare International Airport or Newark Liberty International Airport rather than one nonstop flight. 

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Basically, it will cost more money and more time for travelers. A similar situation applies for service to Albany. In addition, the newspaper said United will end nonstop service from Cleveland to Harrisburg and Cleveland to Pittsburgh on April 30, earlier than the previously announced decision to do so in June.

United blames regional carrier pilot shortages for the new nonstop cuts and for the elimination of Cleveland as a hub, according to the Plain Dealer. Typically, though, it's not unusual for one airline that purchases another to eliminate smaller hubs when flight operations are consolidated, particularly if the merged airline has a mega-hub nearby. 

To read the story in Cleveland.com, the newspaper's online site, visit www.cleveland.com/metro/index.ssf/2014/03/united_cuts_more_nonstops_out.html.

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