South Korean carrier Korean Air has been slowly rebuilding its network over the past few months, restoring its list of destinations to a pre-March 2020 state. On December 31st, the airline issued a revised list of destinations, and most of its North American destinations are back – well, almost.

Korean Air’s North American destinations

Revised and published on December 31st, Korean Air has mostly restored its North American destinations to what they were before the global health crisis. Indeed, a revision in November had the United States as a big market for the airline’s December operations. Below are the airline’s North American destinations (from/between Seoul Incheon) and their frequencies:

  • Los Angeles: 11x per week. Flight KE011/012 is a daily service, while KE017/018 will take place on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays.
  • San Francisco: 5x per week with KE025/026 operating on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, and Sundays.
  • Seattle: 3x per week. KE019/020 will take place on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays.
  • New York: 7x per week with flight KE081/082 operating daily.
  • Boston: 3x per week with KE091/092 flying on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays.
  • Washington: 4x per week on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays as KE093/094.
  • Dallas: 3x per week on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays as KE031/032.
  • Atlanta: 7x per week as KE035/036 operates once per day.
  • Chicago: 3x per week on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays as KE037/038.
  • Vancouver: 4x per week with KE071/KE072 flying on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, and Sundays.
  • Toronto: 3x per week with KE073/KE074 flying on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays.

Compared to our November post about Korean Air’s US destinations for December, Los Angeles has received a small bump with one additional flight per week. However, all other cities look to be the same as the month before.

Which cities still aren’t back yet?

Looking at Korean Air’s route map, there are two cities in North America that stand out as not having service restored. Those two are the popular American holiday destinations of Honolulu and Las Vegas.

Las Vegas is technically accessible on a Korean Air itinerary via Los Angeles and a Delta Air Lines flight, although no direct flights have been operated to the gambling capital since they were canceled in early March.

Minneapolis also appears on Korean Air’s route map, but this was a Delta Air Lines-operated codeshare service.

The absence of these two cities makes complete sense as they are primarily leisure destinations with a lower likelihood of ‘essential travel’ taking place. In the midst of strict travel restrictions, particularly on the South Korean side, relatively short holidays wouldn’t make sense with a two-week quarantine required upon return.

Travel is still quite difficult for those flying to South Korea. For those flying in (or returning from abroad), the airline’s website notes that Koreans and non-Koreans of long-term stay will be quarantined for 14 days at a registered address. Those on short-term visits must also quarantine for 14 days, but at designated facilities at their own expense. This would undoubtedly suppress travel demand for the time being.

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