Chicago - Sarajevo with Eastern Air Lines, from May 28, 2021.
Eastern Air Lines has announced the first transatlantic route, which will fly from Chicago to Sarajevo, in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The bold move comes as the US operator continues to pursue profitable expansion opportunities outside the markets it has served so far and which are well served by other operators.
Starting May 28, Eastern will operate flights between Chicago O'Hare International Airport and Sajarevo Butmir International Airport. It will be a weekly flight and will operate throughout the summer season, until September 5, 2021. This flight will mark both the first flight of Eastern Air Lines in Chicago and the first flight over the Atlantic operated by the airline.
Friday: 2D972 Chicago 19:05 - 11:05 Sarajevo +1
Sunday: 2D973 Sarajevo 08:00 - 12:00 Chicago
The flights will be operated with Boeing 767 aircraft. The carrier based in Pennsylvania has 12 aircraft in its fleet, of which 9 Boeing 767 aircraft, as follows: 2 x Boeing 767-200 and 7 x Boeing 767-300.
Chicago - Sarajevo will be the first Eastern Air Lines flight in Chicago, as well as the first flight over the Atlantic.
Ticket prices start at $ 898 / segment, quite a lot for a transatlantic flight, given that there are cheaper flight alternatives from the US to Bosnia and Herzegovina. However, the ticket price also includes hold baggage of up to 70lb (31 kg).
Eastern Air Lines has worked hard to find opportunities in recent years. Last year, the airline began scheduled flights from Miami and New York JFK to Guayaquil, Ecuador. The airline has plans to expand in Ecuador, as it plans to fly from Miami and New York to Quito, the country's capital, starting in May this year. In addition, flights from Los Angeles to Guayaquil will be added to the operational network, but this route has not yet been set.
This year, the airline will also expand to Uruguay, as it will start operating flights from Miami to Montevideo in June. American Airlines recently suspended four weekly flights from Miami to Montevideo, citing reduced demand from that period.
How profitable all these new flights will be remains to be seen. So will the way Eastern tries to maintain its strategic plans in an economically sustainable way. For now, one thing is certain: Eastern Air Lines is trying to find its place on the map.