ATLANTA – Following the death of Fidel Castro, Delta revamped its service to Havana, Cuba, for the first time in 55 years.
The Cuban dictator, of 47 years, died on Nov. 26. He was 90.
PHOTOS: Fidel Castro
On Dec. 1, Delta started service to Havana, Cuba, from Atlanta, Miami and New York–JFK, which was initially announced in September.
According to Delta, the airline gained service to Havana, Cuba, after its merger with Chicago and Southern Air Lines in 1953, offering nonstop flights from New Orleans. However, Delta suspended service in 1961.
In 2011, Delta ran charter flights to Havana daily from Miami and weekly from Atlanta and New York-JFK--but again suspending service on Dec. 29, 2012.
“…we celebrate our long-awaited and historic return to Cuba, and we reaffirm our thanks to Secretary Foxx and his team as well as the U.S. State Department for granting us the authority to operate this service,” Nicolas Ferri, Delta vice president, said.
Behind the scenes at Delta Air Lines
JetBlue also returned to Atlanta in March after more than 13 years away.
JetBlue previously flew to Atlanta in 2003, when it launched nonstop service to its focus city in Long Beach, Calif. The airline soon added a second California route (Oakland), but its stay in Atlanta would be short-lived. The carrier withdrew from Atlanta after just six months, exiting amid a turf war that erupted between Delta and now-defunct AirTran and caught JetBlue in the crossfire.
USA TODAY contributed to this report.