A slew of international airlines on Tuesday cut flights to the U.S. and one even suspended travel indefinitely to some American cities, citing concerns over Wednesday's planned deployment of 5G service.
The moves came despite AT&T and Verizon agreeing to limit 5G C-band service around select airports after domestic airlines warned that it would lead to the cancellation of both passenger and cargo flights.
Emirates issued an alert that it would suspend flights to Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Miami, Newark, Orlando, San Francisco and Seattle until further notice starting Wednesday "due to operational concerns" with the 5G rollout, saying that "customers holding tickets with the final destination to any of the above will not be accepted at the point of origin."
Japan Airlines said that it would not be flying any Boeing 777 aircraft to the U.S. due to Boeing's notification that the 5G service for mobile phones "may interfere with the radio wave altimeter" installed on the model. The airline said it will cancel all flights that cannot be switched to the use of a Boeing 787.
Japan's second major airline, All Nippon Airways, also canceled some U.S. flights for Wednesday while pointing to the 5G concerns, and so did Air India.
The Federal Aviation Administration has warned that Boeing 787 aircraft could face safety issues where Verizon and AT&T's 5G service is deployed, impacting more than 135 planes in the U.S. and another 1,010 worldwide.
Last month, Boeing and Airbus asked Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg to delay the 5G rollout once again over the concerns, after multiple prior delays in Verizon and AT&T going live with their 5G expansions. The telecommunications giants won $45.5 billion and $23.41 billion contracts, respectively, in 2021 from the Federal Communications Commission in an auction to build on the services.
The broad 5G launch is still set for Wednesday, but both companies agreed Tuesday to temporarily pare back their services just around certain airports after pushback.
United Airlines warned in a statement earlier Tuesday that launching 5G around airports "will result in not only hundreds of thousands of flight cancellations and disruptions for customers across the industry in 2022, but also the suspension of cargo flights into these locations, causing a negative ripple-effect on an already fragile supply chain."
FOX Business' Lucas Manfredi and Daniella Genovese contributed to this report.