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Delta Air Lines to beef up Asian flights from Seattle

NEW YORK--Delta Air Lines wants to expand service to Asia through its partnership with Alaska Airlines.

Delta plans to add a flight between Seattle and Shanghai starting on June 17, 2013. Delta, which is based in Atlanta, is also proposing a flight between Seattle and Tokyo-Haneda, Japan, set to begin in March.

By next summer, Delta plans to operate more than 40 daily flights to 15 destinations from Seattle. The city is the home base of Alaska Airlines' parent company Alaska Air Group Inc. The partnership with Alaska allows Delta to offer connecting service from Seattle to many other U.S. cities across both airlines' networks. Delta customers can access more than 50 markets through a connection in Seattle, while Alaska customers have access to about 60 U.S. cities served by Delta.

Delta will add a fifth daily nonstop flight between Seattle and New York's JFK Airport starting June 1, giving travelers in both cities more opportunities to connect internationally. Those flights between New York and Seattle will offer BusinessElite service, with perks including shorter lines, early boarding, priority baggage service and lounge access.

From JFK, Delta flies to about 40 international destinations in Europe, Africa, Latin America and Asia.

Delta cancelled a plan to start flights to Haneda last year after Japan's earthquake and tsunami. Delta also made cutbacks in Japan service last year as traffic across the Pacific slowed.

Delta currently operates nonstop service to Beijing, Tokyo and Osaka, Japan.

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An Alaska Airlines plane taxis at right as a Delta Air Lines 747-400 airplane sits parked at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport in Seattle, Monday, Oct. 8.

(AP)

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