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A Hot July for U.S. Travel — And a Surprisingly Cool Destination


Scheduled seats up 6% in the domestic U.S. market and 7.8% on Transatlantic routes…and the hottest city-pair in the U.S. is sure to surprise

The story last summer in the closely-watched U.S. domestic and transatlantic markets was growth. The story this summer? More — a lot more. The insights below are from an analysis of Cirium Diio Mi schedule data.

The U.S. Domestic Market: Up 6% in July 2024

The major U.S. airlines have scheduled around 6% more domestic capacity this July than last year — with a notable exception. This July, JetBlue has scheduled 9.2% fewer domestic capacity compared to last. (JetBlue announced capacity cuts earlier in the year primarily due to staffing and the congested network on the East Coast of the U.S.) Southwest Airlines will schedule only 1.4% more seats for this July compared to last, having reduced its plans due to availability of the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft they rely on.

The airlines’ plans differ substantially depending on the type of carrier. Three ultra-low cost carriers Frontier, Spirit, and Sun Country will bring significantly more capacity to their markets.

Breeze Airways — which now boasts a fleet of 40 aircraft (of which 25 are Airbus A220) — shows a 33% increase in scheduled seats. In the aggregate, these carriers fly substantially fewer seats than the Big 4 U.S. airlines. American Airlines will fly the most seats out of any carrier at more than 20.5M scheduled seats, followed closely by Southwest Airlines.

Scheduled Seats in July 2024

AirlineJuly 2024July 2023Percentage Change
Alaska Airlines5,152,7414,789,0667.59%
Allegiant Air2,263,7162,154,8225.05%
American Airlines20,519,68018,973,8298.15%
Avelo Airlines294,490291,9440.87%
Breeze Airways542,516406,81033.36%
Delta Air Lines18,659,45317,777,3474.96%
Frontier Airlines3,989,4722,939,32635.73%
Hawaiian Airlines1,105,7051,124,554-1.68%
JetBlue2,993,5423,298,323-9.24%
Southwest Airlines20,325,41420,051,0831.37%
Spirit Airlines4,740,1353,906,19421.35%
Sun Country Airlines576,414462,21024.71%
United Airlines14,407,78613,987,6543.00%

Transatlantic Flying: Up 7.8% in 2024

Airlines increased capacity in summer 2023 compared to 2022 by 18%, and are poised to do the same for July 2024. The transatlantic carriers — including the European operators — will deploy additional capacity from the U.S. to Europe, with schedules showing a 7.8% increase in seats flown over July 2023.

The top carriers? United and Delta are following the lead they set last summer, finding opportunities for revenue premiums. This summer, watch for the Europe carriers to add — including Air France with a 15% increase in scheduled seats — perhaps betting on the strength of demand for the Paris Olympics.

Airline NameJuly 2024July 2023Difference% Difference
United Airlines722,428701,07521,3533.0%
Delta Air Lines719,985685,49734,4885.0%
American Airlines565,077533,37731,7005.9%
British Airways419,169411,5677,6021.8%
Lufthansa323,584292,85430,73010.5%
Air France279,426242,50836,91815.2%
Virgin Atlantic242,973223,51719,4568.7%
Turkish Airlines209,672187,29122,38111.9%
Aer Lingus163,591154,6748,9175.8%
Iberia131,072114,42816,64414.5%
Icelandair117,360104,60012,76012.2%

Where are the destinations of choice?

For the European market, Denmark, Croatia, and Spain show the most growth in capacity from the U.S., with double-digit growth in flying.

Denmark27%
Croatia17%
Spain16%

For the U.S. domestic market, the usual U.S. domestic city-pairs always factor — between New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles. However, it may surprise readers to know that Seattle, Washington to Anchorage, Alaska will have the most seats flown in July 2024 — around 146,000 seats, some 2,000 more seats than between New York-LaGuardia and Chicago O’Hare. Alaska Airlines will fly almost 80% of these north-south flights.

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