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The “open air” Air Transport Agreement between the European Union and the United States took effect on March 30, 2008.  Under this agreement, European airlines will be able to fly without restrictions from any point in the European Union to any point in the United States for the first time.  Experts predict this will result in more options and cheaper fares for passengers.


Airlines within the European Union are now able to operate direct flights to the U.S. from anywhere in Europe and not just from their home country.  The agreement eliminates all restrictions on routes, prices and the number of weekly flights previously in place.


The European Union and United States markets make up 60 percent of the world’s aviation traffic.  According to an announcement from the European Union, flights between London-Heathrow and the United States are expected to increase immediately by 20 percent compared with April of 2007.