Jan 12 Airlines have submitted bids seeking to
purchase takeoff and landing rights at Reagan National Airport
that American Airlines Group is required to sell under
an agreement with the U.S. government, two sources familiar with
the matter said.
The sources requested anonymity as they were not authorized
to speak on the record.
An announcement about the sales of slots at Reagan National
could be made this week, the sources said, but they did not know
how many airlines had submitted bids.
American Airlines Group, formed when US Airways Group and
AMR Corp merged in December, declined to comment on Sunday.
The merging carriers agreed to give up 52 pairs of takeoff
and landing rights, or 104 slots, at Reagan National Airport
located just outside Washington, as well as certain other assets
under a settlement of an antitrust lawsuit by the U.S. Justice
Department seeking to block their combination. The merger formed
the world's largest airline.
Southwest Airlines and Virgin America prevailed in
bidding late last year to purchase slots at New York's LaGuardia
Airport that American agreed to shed under the merger settlement
. The new American also agreed to give up gates
at five other major airports: Boston Logan, Chicago O'Hare,
Dallas Love Field, Los Angeles International and Miami
The Justice Department said the slot and gate sales would
give low-cost competitors better access to some of the nation's
JetBlue Airways, Southwest and Delta Air Lines
have publicly expressed interest in acquiring assets at
Reagan National. Sixteen of the 104 Reagan National slots are
currently leased to JetBlue and would be offered to JetBlue
permanently, according to the November settlement agreement