There’s something exciting about flying widebodies domestically, at least until you’re ready to get off and face a long queue. Between January 14th and 20th, 2022, there are nearly 2,000 domestic US flights by twin-aisle aircraft, a vast number versus previous years. Across all airlines, the B767-300ER remains the primary type, Delta is the leading operator, and there are 74 routes.
2,000 domestic US widebody flights a week
There are 1,951 widebody flights in the US in the week starting January 14th, according to analyzing schedules from data experts Cirium. There’s an average of 279 each day. If that sounds a lot, it is. It is the highest volume for years, and 44% greater than in the same week in 2020, just before the pandemic struck.
- January 14th-20th, 2019: 1,224 domestic US widebodies (an average of 175 a day)
- The same dates in 2020: 1,353 (193)
- 2021: 1,147 (164)
- 2022: 1,951 (279)
Travelers across the United States have been spoiled with widebodies increasingly deployed on domestic routes. Border restrictions meant they were less required for long-haul service, while pilots needed to keep current. They also offered a quick way to replace lower-capacity aircraft to higher-demanded hotspots – which wasn’t Honolulu, at least from Charlotte.
Delta is number-one
Delta has more domestic widebody flights than any other US airline. It uses them on 27 routes in the coming week, including 15 from Atlanta, with Phoenix, Orlando, San Diego, Seattle, and Las Vegas the main recipients. However, with up to eight daily departures, Los Angeles to JFK sees twin-aisles more than any other route. Delta is now the sole operator of them on the long transcontinental airport-pair.
- Delta: 37% of domestic US widebody flights
- United: 33%
- American: 19%
- Hawaiian: 11%
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The B767-300ER remains the leading aircraft
With nearly four in ten flights, the B767-300ER remains the dominant widebody, despite American retiring the type. Cirium shows that Delta has nearly twice as many movements by it as United. Atlanta is the best place to see the variant with Delta, while Newark and Houston are virtually neck-and-neck for United.
- B767-300ER: 23% of domestic US widebodies (by Delta and United)
- B777-200/200ER: 19% (American, United)
- A330-200: 14% (Hawaiian, Delta)
- B767-400ER: 12% (Delta, United)
- A330-300: 8% (Delta)
- B787-9: 7% (American, United)
- B777-300ER: 7% (American, United)
- B787-8: 4% (American, United)
- B787-1: 3% (United)
- A350-900: 2% (Delta)
- A330-900: 1% (Delta)
Believe it or not: 3 routes are just once-weekly
While 14 routes have 21 weekly flights or more (i.e., an average of at least three-daily), as shown below in order of flights, three routes have just one weekly service. They are all by United and they all involve Hawaii: Chicago-Kona (Saturday; B787-8), Newark-Kahului (Saturday; B767-300ER), and Washington-Honolulu (Saturday; B767-300ER).
- JFK-Los Angeles
- Los Angeles-Miami
- Newark-San Francisco
- Honolulu-Los Angeles
- Honolulu-San Francisco
- Atlanta-San Diego
- JFK-Las Vegas
- JFK-San Francisco
What widebodies have you flown domestically and where? Share your experiences in the comments.