I hate to think about this but lets say US Airways takes the big flight to the sky and joins Eastern, TWA and the others. What do you think will happen to their assets?
Here are my theories, feel free to tell me why I am wrong or right, either way.
CLT- This is obviously a very strong hub for the Southeast. Who ever gets this could go head to head with DL for Southeast supremecy so:
DL- No way, they have ATL
NW- Doubt it, they have MEM
UA- I know that CLT was supposed to be the big thing UA wanted but I think IAD works fine as a Southeast hub for them.
AA- Doubt it, if they wanted a Southeast hub they have RDU and BNA waiting, but they have pulled out of both of them. MIA is not a Southeast hub, lets be honest here
CO- Maybe, if anyone wants CLT as a hub it would be these guys. They don't have a southeast hub and they hung tough for a while at places like HHH, DAB & MLB. That makes me think they would be the most likely to take CLT and try to break DL's dominence of the Southeast
CLT Conclusion- If someone wants it, its going to be CO. Even if they don't want it as a hub, they could still use it as a focus city. All the other guys would ramp up operations at CLT to pick up the slack that US will leave behind. I could even see WN coming in at that point.
UA- No, to close to IAD, no use to them
CO- To close to EWR and CLE
AA-I don't think there is enough O&D to make it worth it to them
Air Tran- Focus City? Yes, Hub? They better stick to ATL for a while.
DL- I see them going somewhere else, as you will see later in this post.
NW- What started this topic is the idea that somebody proposed on another thread that NW might want PIT as a Northeast hub. Noble idea with merit. But I think DTW can act as a Northeast hub for them and you have its partner CO just up the road at EWR. Still, it would be interesting to see.
HP- If DL keeps trying to drive them out of Columbus they could jump at the oppurtunity for a fresh start in a new hub. Of course that is given that they get serious about having an east coast operation
PIT Conclusion- NW is a maybe, but doubtful. Same story for HP, maybe but doubtful. Probably just a focus city for Air Tran and a ramp up for the majors. Not enough O&D for anyone but the big guys.
To close to places like IAD, BWI, DCA, EWR, JFK and such. All I see is a ramp up by the other guys but no one taking the hub.
DCA & LGA
I combined the two of these because I see only one other line that is a position to take these two key places, and that is DL.
Disclaimer- I am not an expert on who has what engines, maybe you guys could help me out.
MD 80s- to the desert
737- probably also to the desert unless WN wants to pick up some second hands for a quick expansion. Anyone else that you could think of that wants a quick expansion with 737s?
757-Maybe AA if they don't buy brand new, if AA doesn't want them, then they could go anywhere in the world
767-Secondhand to a smaller European or African carrier, or the desert
A319- If they engines are compatible, I say Frontier or NW, NW espically if the PIT theory is wright
A320- If compatible, NW (see the 319), UA, HP or maybe Jetblue if they ever get off their only new kick
A330- NW, they are the only ones I could imagine
Of course there will be a lot of destinations dropped, all the ones in Kansas, a lot of the ones in the northeast. But hey, thats what happens with airline shakeups like this.
Interesting side note, for IND fans, I ready on Indystar.com that US is the largest carrier at IND by # of boardings with 15%, WN is seond with 14% and ATA is third with 12%, I figured ATA would be number one and United number two, but hey, I was wrong.