Guys, I'm a novice. I'm not a pro. I feel like I must submit a disclaimer here before I post!
It seems, from first glance, that the airline industry is doing a bit of going back to early aviation. In the past you saw the larger airlines taking the larger cities and going international. Then it seemed like many in the US were going for global domination. Now as costs are rising I read where some airlines are abandoning smaller cities and restructuring in the larger. For instance, the recent news with Delta and the airline deciding to end service to 24 cities is one example. But then many of the airlines have their smaller routes outsourced to smaller regional carriers. They just carry the airline's name. I hope this is making sense.
What I am getting at, are we getting back to a time with fewer and fewer hub cities, more and more "right-sized" cities, and perhaps other airlines coming into play to take on smaller markets? Or, are we going to see start up airlines getting swallowed up eventually by the larger carriers? I prefer the competition amongst many carriers!
Are going to see a type of Pan Am or TWA emerge going more international and then smaller domestic carriers? Or a mix of stronger international and domestic being more realistic in terms of service, coupled by regional carriers?
Again, from a novice, an American who lives in Sao Paulo, Brasil.