BreezyIAH
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Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 2:04 am

With DL's rapid expansion in recent years with p2p routes and expanding services in underserved markets or those left behind from the pre-US3 mergers, would UA or AA implement something similar to keep pace, coupled with the rise of ULCCs? Or simply stick with the "hub-spoke" systems through main hubs like DFW, ORD, etc.? (Aside from routes up and down the east and west coasts)
 
sq256
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 2:32 am

Past attempts at Focus Cities didn't quite work with UA (Seattle & Miami). Although UA never considered JFK as a "hub" or "focus city", their JFK operations at their peak was one large O&D outstation with a international crew base, at least before UA's drawback to just p.s to LAX/SFO & UAX to IAD pre-merger with CO.
 
tphuang
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 2:36 am

BreezyIAH wrote:
With DL's rapid expansion in recent years with p2p routes and expanding services in underserved markets or those left behind from the pre-US3 mergers, would UA or AA implement something similar to keep pace, coupled with the rise of ULCCs? Or simply stick with the "hub-spoke" systems through main hubs like DFW, ORD, etc.? (Aside from routes up and down the east and west coasts)

which particular route do you think went really well?
 
N62NA
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:00 am

It's an interesting question to which I have no answer, but I am looking forward to reading what others think.
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airplanedaj
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:03 am

I think AA could easily build up their BOS and SFO operations a bit more, but they've tried and been unsuccessful with smaller focus cities (see BNA, STL, and SJC).
 
loisencroach
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:03 am

UA tried a small focus city at SAT back in the 2000's
 
wn676
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:10 am

I think the better question is, is DL's strategy even worth pursuing? I've always been under the assumption they do it more out of necessity than choice. And as we've seen in the past, p2p and focus city operations have historically always been the first to go from the hub airlines' networks during economic downturns.
Last edited by wn676 on Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:11 am

airplanedaj wrote:
I think AA could easily build up their BOS and SFO operations a bit more, but they've tried and been unsuccessful with smaller focus cities (see BNA, STL, and SJC).


What are you talking about with STL? It was a 500 flight/day hub when AA acquired it.
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Super80Fan
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:35 am

AA I think is the most likely to start up P2P routes, and they already have a few. UA is still betting on the hub to spoke model, so it will be interesting to see who wins.
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JRL3289
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 4:10 am

wn676 wrote:
I think the better question is, is DL's strategy even worth pursuing? I've always been under the assumption they do it more out of necessity than choice. And as we've seen in the past, p2p and focus city operations have historically always been the first to go from the hub airlines' networks during economic downturns.


I think this is worth a second mention. Compared to DL, AA and UA--either combined or individually--dominate most of the largest markets in the US. Out of the top 20 primary statistical areas (PSAs) in the US, DL has hubs in 3 (NYC, LA, Boston), AA has 7 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, Dallas, Philadelphia, Miami) and UA has 6 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Houston). Yes, DL has a stranglehold on the markets like ATL, DTW and MSP, but it seems like they have a compelling need to supplement what AA and UA have in places like ORD/DFW/IAH/EWR/PHL/MIA/IAD/DCA with their focus city strategy.
 
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 4:14 am

UA and AA have a very different route structure than DL. UA has hubs in the four largest cities in the US (New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Houston), the Capitol, and has built a major transpacific hub in San Francisco. That gives them a pretty captive customer base right there. AA isn't too far behind, though they're the weakest player in New York, they have DFW, Chicago, Los Angeles, DCA, and a major South American hub at MIA. DL runs one hell of an operation, but other than JFK/LGA, their hubs are in smaller markets. I think this makes it easier for them to look at more focus city type operations.
 
Aither
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 4:23 am

I think every route is going from one point to another point ... or maybe you are talking about the "point to point" passengers (passengers who don't connect) ?
In that case UA and AA are already carrying a lot of point to point passengers. So I don't see the point you are trying to make...
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Dominion301
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 4:36 am

JRL3289 wrote:
wn676 wrote:
I think the better question is, is DL's strategy even worth pursuing? I've always been under the assumption they do it more out of necessity than choice. And as we've seen in the past, p2p and focus city operations have historically always been the first to go from the hub airlines' networks during economic downturns.


I think this is worth a second mention. Compared to DL, AA and UA--either combined or individually--dominate most of the largest markets in the US. Out of the top 20 primary statistical areas (PSAs) in the US, DL has hubs in 3 (NYC, LA, Boston), AA has 7 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, Dallas, Philadelphia, Miami) and UA has 6 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Houston). Yes, DL has a stranglehold on the markets like ATL, DTW and MSP, but it seems like they have a compelling need to supplement what AA and UA have in places like ORD/DFW/IAH/EWR/PHL/MIA/IAD/DCA with their focus city strategy.


Wouldn't SEA be a top 20 PSA to add to DL's roster? Actually DTW must still be in the top 20, ditto ATL. Mind you PHX for AA must be as well.
 
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 4:43 am

Dominion301 wrote:
JRL3289 wrote:
wn676 wrote:
I think the better question is, is DL's strategy even worth pursuing? I've always been under the assumption they do it more out of necessity than choice. And as we've seen in the past, p2p and focus city operations have historically always been the first to go from the hub airlines' networks during economic downturns.


I think this is worth a second mention. Compared to DL, AA and UA--either combined or individually--dominate most of the largest markets in the US. Out of the top 20 primary statistical areas (PSAs) in the US, DL has hubs in 3 (NYC, LA, Boston), AA has 7 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, Dallas, Philadelphia, Miami) and UA has 6 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Houston). Yes, DL has a stranglehold on the markets like ATL, DTW and MSP, but it seems like they have a compelling need to supplement what AA and UA have in places like ORD/DFW/IAH/EWR/PHL/MIA/IAD/DCA with their focus city strategy.


Wouldn't SEA be a top 20 PSA to add to DL's roster? Actually DTW must still be in the top 20, ditto ATL. Mind you PHX for AA must be as well.


All of DL's hubs (SEA included) are in metropolitan areas that are experiencing growth at or above 10%. DTW is the noted exception and will probably stay that way for awhile.
 
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 4:56 am

I don't see AA, DL & UA doing point to point but mainly low cost carriers - routes they can make money.
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BAINY3
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 4:58 am

Dominion301 wrote:
JRL3289 wrote:
wn676 wrote:
I think the better question is, is DL's strategy even worth pursuing? I've always been under the assumption they do it more out of necessity than choice. And as we've seen in the past, p2p and focus city operations have historically always been the first to go from the hub airlines' networks during economic downturns.


I think this is worth a second mention. Compared to DL, AA and UA--either combined or individually--dominate most of the largest markets in the US. Out of the top 20 primary statistical areas (PSAs) in the US, DL has hubs in 3 (NYC, LA, Boston), AA has 7 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, Dallas, Philadelphia, Miami) and UA has 6 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Houston). Yes, DL has a stranglehold on the markets like ATL, DTW and MSP, but it seems like they have a compelling need to supplement what AA and UA have in places like ORD/DFW/IAH/EWR/PHL/MIA/IAD/DCA with their focus city strategy.


Wouldn't SEA be a top 20 PSA to add to DL's roster? Actually DTW must still be in the top 20, ditto ATL. Mind you PHX for AA must be as well.


I assume he meant to say top 10.
 
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 5:43 am

Aither wrote:
I think every route is going from one point to another point ... or maybe you are talking about the "point to point" passengers (passengers who don't connect) ?
In that case UA and AA are already carrying a lot of point to point passengers. So I don't see the point you are trying to make...


Point to Point means a direct flight that goes from city A to city B, where neither A or B is a hub for the airline in question. DEN-SFO would be point to point for Delta, but is hub to hub for United, and hub to spoke/point for Frontier.
 
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 6:41 am

Aither wrote:
I think every route is going from one point to another point ... or maybe you are talking about the "point to point" passengers (passengers who don't connect) ?
In that case UA and AA are already carrying a lot of point to point passengers. So I don't see the point you are trying to make...


P2P is more non hub city to a non-hub city.
i.e. say AA if AA flew TUS-OKC would be a P2P route while TUS to DFW would be a hub connection.
 
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delta747tlv
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:29 am

JRL3289 wrote:
I think this is worth a second mention. Compared to DL, AA and UA--either combined or individually--dominate most of the largest markets in the US. Out of the top 20 primary statistical areas (PSAs) in the US, DL has hubs in 3 (NYC, LA, Boston), AA has 7 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, Dallas, Philadelphia, Miami) and UA has 6 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Houston). Yes, DL has a stranglehold on the markets like ATL, DTW and MSP, but it seems like they have a compelling need to supplement what AA and UA have in places like ORD/DFW/IAH/EWR/PHL/MIA/IAD/DCA with their focus city strategy.



Top 20 PSAs (Per Wikipedia)

1) New York (DL,AA,UA)
2) Los Angeles (DL,AA,UA)
3) Chicago (AA,UA)
4) DC (UA,AA)
5) San Francisco (UA)
6) Boston (DL)
7) DFW (AA)
8) Philly (AA)
9) Miami (AA)
10) Houston (UA)
11) Atlanta (DL)
12) Detroit (DL)
13) Seattle (DL)
14) Phoenix (AA)
15) Minneapolis (DL)
16) Cleveland (UA focus city)
17) Denver (UA)
18) San Diego
19) Portland
20) Orlando (DL?)

So Delta has 7 (plus Orlando maybe), AA has 8 , and UA 7 and a focus city, pretty balanced.

loisencroach wrote:
All of DL's hubs (SEA included) are in metropolitan areas that are experiencing growth at or above 10%. DTW is the noted exception and will probably stay that way for awhile.

None of the PSAs show over 10% growth (per Wiki at least) but some showing at least 8-9% (Houston,Miami,Denver,Portland,Orlando) and only Cleveland and Detroit show a decline
 
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Midwestindy
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:40 am

AA and UA both have at least one "focus city" although neither are formally given that name by either airline.

CLE p2p(UA)-MCO, CUN, FLL, SJU, RSW, CHS, MKE, BOS, and a few others
BOS p2p(AA)-CDG(ending), CUN, MBJ, PLS, PUJ, PIT, MDT, ROC, SYR, and a few others maybe

I know, AA operates other p2p routes (Ex. RDU-PIT), any other focus cities I am missing?
ATL BWI BOS CLT MDW ORD CVG DFW DAL DAB DEN DTW FLL RSW GNV BDL HNL IAH IND MCI LAS LAX SDF MEM MIA MKE MSP BNA EWR HVN MSY JFK LGA MCO SFB PHX PHL PVD RDU RAP RIC SLC STL CPS PIE SEA TPA DCA IAD
 
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 11:14 am

JRL3289 wrote:
wn676 wrote:
I think the better question is, is DL's strategy even worth pursuing? I've always been under the assumption they do it more out of necessity than choice. And as we've seen in the past, p2p and focus city operations have historically always been the first to go from the hub airlines' networks during economic downturns.


I think this is worth a second mention. Compared to DL, AA and UA--either combined or individually--dominate most of the largest markets in the US. Out of the top 20 primary statistical areas (PSAs) in the US, DL has hubs in 3 (NYC, LA, Boston), AA has 7 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, Dallas, Philadelphia, Miami) and UA has 6 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Houston). Yes, DL has a stranglehold on the markets like ATL, DTW and MSP, but it seems like they have a compelling need to supplement what AA and UA have in places like ORD/DFW/IAH/EWR/PHL/MIA/IAD/DCA with their focus city strategy.


Inconvenient facts get in the way of your argument. Compared to UA, DL flies more domestic revenue passenger miles at higher yields - in spite of UA's dominance. DL has higher yields than AA, too.
 
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 11:26 am

delta747tlv wrote:
JRL3289 wrote:
I think this is worth a second mention. Compared to DL, AA and UA--either combined or individually--dominate most of the largest markets in the US. Out of the top 20 primary statistical areas (PSAs) in the US, DL has hubs in 3 (NYC, LA, Boston), AA has 7 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, Dallas, Philadelphia, Miami) and UA has 6 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Houston). Yes, DL has a stranglehold on the markets like ATL, DTW and MSP, but it seems like they have a compelling need to supplement what AA and UA have in places like ORD/DFW/IAH/EWR/PHL/MIA/IAD/DCA with their focus city strategy.



Top 20 PSAs (Per Wikipedia)

1) New York (DL,AA,UA)
2) Los Angeles (DL,AA,UA)
3) Chicago (AA,UA)
4) DC (UA,AA)
5) San Francisco (UA)
6) Boston (DL)
7) DFW (AA)
8) Philly (AA)
9) Miami (AA)
10) Houston (UA)
11) Atlanta (DL)
12) Detroit (DL)
13) Seattle (DL)
14) Phoenix (AA)
15) Minneapolis (DL)
16) Cleveland (UA focus city)
17) Denver (UA)
18) San Diego
19) Portland
20) Orlando (DL?)

So Delta has 7 (plus Orlando maybe), AA has 8 , and UA 7 and a focus city, pretty balanced.

loisencroach wrote:
All of DL's hubs (SEA included) are in metropolitan areas that are experiencing growth at or above 10%. DTW is the noted exception and will probably stay that way for awhile.

None of the PSAs show over 10% growth (per Wiki at least) but some showing at least 8-9% (Houston,Miami,Denver,Portland,Orlando) and only Cleveland and Detroit show a decline

Delta may call Boston a hub but they have smaller market share than aa. And on their hub to hub route of bos lax, aa has them completely dominated despite having only hub on one end.
 
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 11:40 am

wn676 wrote:
I think the better question is, is DL's strategy even worth pursuing? I've always been under the assumption they do it more out of necessity than choice. And as we've seen in the past, p2p and focus city operations have historically always been the first to go from the hub airlines' networks during economic downturns.



Good question----
 
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 11:45 am

wn676 wrote:
I think the better question is, is DL's strategy even worth pursuing? I've always been under the assumption they do it more out of necessity than choice. And as we've seen in the past, p2p and focus city operations have historically always been the first to go from the hub airlines' networks during economic downturns.


Fair question. I'm not sure if the phenomenon alluded to above and in other posters' comments fully explains the divergence in point-to-point strategy at Delta vs AA/United, but I do think there's probably at least something to it.

Nonetheless, AA and United - at least for now - seem quite content to let Delta keep overflying its dominated megahubs with lots of new point-to-point routes, and AA and United both seem far more focused at the moment in solidifying the major metro hubs they have. We'll see whether or not, and if so how, that thinking evolves over time, as AA and United continue to steadily catch up to Delta in terms of post-merger network optimization.

I will say that, as I've stated over and over, in AA's case the two most glaring point-to-point gaps in the entire domestic network both emanate from BOS - SFO and RDU. Those, coupled with PIT, seem like point-to-point routes AA should be able to make work out of BOS given AA's very relatively presence at both ends of all three routes. Beyond that, I can somewhat understand why AA and United could simply be rationalizing their approach as, effectively, "with hubs of this scale in metro areas of this scale, it's probably not worth it for us to dedicate aircraft to overflying these hubs."
 
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 1:30 pm

BreezyIAH wrote:
With DL's rapid expansion in recent years with p2p routes and expanding services in underserved markets or those left behind from the pre-US3 mergers, would UA or AA implement something similar to keep pace, coupled with the rise of ULCCs? Or simply stick with the "hub-spoke" systems through main hubs like DFW, ORD, etc.? (Aside from routes up and down the east and west coasts)


It is interesting that you should ask this question because it is a question many UA employees would constantly ask. A few months ago at a town hall meeting Oscar address this straight on by stating UA is not interested in pursuing DL's strategy. What works for DL may not necessarily work for UA and or AA. All of these airlines have different strengths and weakness both domestically and internationally. Even if UA wanted to mirror DL focus city strategy they couldn't because UA doesn't have enough narrow body aircraft in the fleet. Even if we did have the narrow body aircraft would the DL strategy result in profitability for UA or would we flood the market with so much capacity that that we are loosing more money that we are making. One if the things Oscar is really focused on is not repeating the mistakes of the past that resulted in all the major legacies having to file bankruptcy. UA's focus right now is on sustainable and profitable growth not trying to keep up with DL's strategy.
Of the US3 UA has the smallest narrow body fleet however on the flip side if I'm not mistaken UA either has the largest or second largest wide body fleet of the US3. At the end of the day it is about making the best use of the resources at your disposal and those resources are not limited to aircraft only.
I also remember Oscar saying is we have to stop looking at the AA, DL, and UA as one in the same when the truth is they are all different and what works for DL won't necessarily work for UA. Another example he gave was the workforce difference DL's workforce is non-union the only exception are their pilots. While the pay may be comparable between the US3 everything else is different. More than 50% of UA's workforce is union and it is probably the same at AA. I'm not sure how things work at DL as far as work rules for all the employee groups, ratio of part time to full time employees, ECT. When you have a union the airline not only has to comply with the FAA but also the rules of the contract and when you are looking at sustainable growth and sustainable profitability you have to take into account the workforce and the union contracts. So when you talk about mirroring DL's strategy you have to take into account the entire airlines operation. Oscar has stated there are benefits DL enjoyed because the majority of their workforce is non-union that both AA and UA can't take advantage of. However he made clear he is by no means say UA employees should get rid of their unions. What he is saying is the only strategy UA can follow is the one that works for us because our entire operation is different than DL's, WN's, and AA's.
Following DL's strategy would probably land UA back in bankruptcy. Each airline has to come up with its own strategy for growth and profitability and I think all 3 of the US legacies are finally on the right path.
 
klakzky123
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 1:44 pm

kiowa wrote:
wn676 wrote:
I think the better question is, is DL's strategy even worth pursuing? I've always been under the assumption they do it more out of necessity than choice. And as we've seen in the past, p2p and focus city operations have historically always been the first to go from the hub airlines' networks during economic downturns.



Good question----


Revenue management today is light years ahead of where it was during the last round of bankruptcy. Carriers are far smarter when launching routes and won't hesitate to cut them if performance doesn't keep up. Most of the old school route planners and executives have retired or have been purged. Airlines are far smarter and more importantly far more flexible. That's not to say that bankruptcy can't happen again but they're all carrying far fewer dead weight routes than they used to (including DL). You are right that P2P routes will still go first in any downturn but that's fairly logical given that you can route the passenger over a hub instead. In a downturn O&D starts to crater so redirecting what remains to a hub becomes the safest choice.
 
jumbojet
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 2:53 pm

I haven't read all the replies so maybe someone touched on this already but simply, in my opinion, that is not UA nor AA's long term strategy. UA is busy connecting its IAH and SFO hubs to just about every major and secondary city on the planet that matters. AA is entrenched on building LAX. Not all airlines need the same strategy.
 
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:52 pm

delta747tlv wrote:

loisencroach wrote:
All of DL's hubs (SEA included) are in metropolitan areas that are experiencing growth at or above 10%. DTW is the noted exception and will probably stay that way for awhile.

None of the PSAs show over 10% growth (per Wiki at least) but some showing at least 8-9% (Houston,Miami,Denver,Portland,Orlando) and only Cleveland and Detroit show a decline



Here are some more recent numbers (2010 - 2016). Specifying a growth rate without providing a time period for that growth is not terribly useful.

http://www.startribune.com/twin-cities- ... 417874533/
 
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:55 pm

UA needs to dominate its hub markets, grow them accordingly, and increase the connectivity by adding new markets--and incremental new frequencies--in its existing hubs.

THAT'S the best way for them to increase revenues and grow organically.

A so-called "focus" city is dependent upon local O&D, negates connectivity generally, and is too demanding insofar as number of shells required to fly whatever schedule a carrier would put in it. The consolidation in the USA has pared down underperforming hubs--there is zero need to add more lift outside of said hubs unless a compelling case can be made for it, which it cannot.
 
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 4:16 pm

airplanedaj wrote:
I think AA could easily build up their BOS and SFO operations a bit more, but they've tried and been unsuccessful with smaller focus cities (see BNA, STL, and SJC).


STL was TWA's primary hub, when AA completed the acquisition in 2001. BNA and SJC were both considered hubs, until competition made AA decide to start scaling back the hubs. The plan in the 1980s was to have traffic from smaller cities in the Southeast feed into BNA to connect to the Northeast, Midwest, and Southwest. After AA bought Air Cal, SJC was supposed to act as a connecting hub between cities along the West Coast and points east of the Rockies.

It seems to me that any P2P flying by UA or AA would be based on several considerations: the amount of flying between any two given points, whether either one of those points has a large number of F/F program members, and if any of those cities have traffic generated by a business with a contract with either carrier.
 
drdisque
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 5:04 pm

Most of the cities you'd serve out of a new "focus city" are already UA hubs - UA has some of the largest O&D hubs in the US. So a UA "focus city" is really just a city with service to every hub.
 
JRL3289
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 3:12 am

BAINY3 wrote:
Dominion301 wrote:
JRL3289 wrote:

I think this is worth a second mention. Compared to DL, AA and UA--either combined or individually--dominate most of the largest markets in the US. Out of the top 20 primary statistical areas (PSAs) in the US, DL has hubs in 3 (NYC, LA, Boston), AA has 7 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, Dallas, Philadelphia, Miami) and UA has 6 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Houston). Yes, DL has a stranglehold on the markets like ATL, DTW and MSP, but it seems like they have a compelling need to supplement what AA and UA have in places like ORD/DFW/IAH/EWR/PHL/MIA/IAD/DCA with their focus city strategy.


Wouldn't SEA be a top 20 PSA to add to DL's roster? Actually DTW must still be in the top 20, ditto ATL. Mind you PHX for AA must be as well.


I assume he meant to say top 10.


Yes, sorry, top 10 was on my mind but when I wrote that post I was also thinking about DL's hubs in the markets in positions 11-20. :)
 
77H
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 3:35 am

Dominion301 wrote:
JRL3289 wrote:
wn676 wrote:
I think the better question is, is DL's strategy even worth pursuing? I've always been under the assumption they do it more out of necessity than choice. And as we've seen in the past, p2p and focus city operations have historically always been the first to go from the hub airlines' networks during economic downturns.


I think this is worth a second mention. Compared to DL, AA and UA--either combined or individually--dominate most of the largest markets in the US. Out of the top 20 primary statistical areas (PSAs) in the US, DL has hubs in 3 (NYC, LA, Boston), AA has 7 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, Dallas, Philadelphia, Miami) and UA has 6 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Houston). Yes, DL has a stranglehold on the markets like ATL, DTW and MSP, but it seems like they have a compelling need to supplement what AA and UA have in places like ORD/DFW/IAH/EWR/PHL/MIA/IAD/DCA with their focus city strategy.


Wouldn't SEA be a top 20 PSA to add to DL's roster? Actually DTW must still be in the top 20, ditto ATL. Mind you PHX for AA must be as well.


The success of a hub can't be measured by population of the MSA alone. The economic strength or GDP of a city/MSA would be a stronger indicator of a hub's success than pure population. A hub isn't likely to be successful if a vast majority of its populace cannot afford a plane ticket. There are obvious exceptions to this based on hub type (O&D vs Transfer Focus, Geographically Isolated, etc).

77H
 
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LAX772LR
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 5:38 am

loisencroach wrote:
UA tried a small focus city at SAT back in the 2000's

That wasn't UA.

That was AX operating at risk, in UA colors with UA codeshare.
I myself, suspect a more prosaic motive... ~Thranduil
 
Dominion301
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:15 pm

77H wrote:
Dominion301 wrote:
JRL3289 wrote:

I think this is worth a second mention. Compared to DL, AA and UA--either combined or individually--dominate most of the largest markets in the US. Out of the top 20 primary statistical areas (PSAs) in the US, DL has hubs in 3 (NYC, LA, Boston), AA has 7 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, Dallas, Philadelphia, Miami) and UA has 6 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Houston). Yes, DL has a stranglehold on the markets like ATL, DTW and MSP, but it seems like they have a compelling need to supplement what AA and UA have in places like ORD/DFW/IAH/EWR/PHL/MIA/IAD/DCA with their focus city strategy.


Wouldn't SEA be a top 20 PSA to add to DL's roster? Actually DTW must still be in the top 20, ditto ATL. Mind you PHX for AA must be as well.


The success of a hub can't be measured by population of the MSA alone. The economic strength or GDP of a city/MSA would be a stronger indicator of a hub's success than pure population. A hub isn't likely to be successful if a vast majority of its populace cannot afford a plane ticket. There are obvious exceptions to this based on hub type (O&D vs Transfer Focus, Geographically Isolated, etc).

77H


Yup. Hence why places like CLT and SLC pull way above their weight.
 
UpNAWAy
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:23 pm

Some of Delta's non hub flying is not by choice but by HUB limitations. If space and operational issues are not a factor every one of the big 3 would prefer to do only Hub to Hub flying. Its the most profitable.

The other issue is MSP, DTW, SLC are O&D and business nothing burgers compared to PHL, CLT, MIA, IAH, DFW, DEN, ORD.
 
AWACSooner
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 1:35 pm

ckfred wrote:
airplanedaj wrote:
After AA bought Air Cal, SJC was supposed to act as a connecting hub between cities along the West Coast and points east of the Rockies.
.

Actually, it was RenoAir (QQ) that had the SJC hub when AA bought them out in the late 90's.
 
jasoncrh
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 2:49 pm

In the 1980s, AirCal had the San Jose hub. AA first started building a hub on the back of that acquisition in the 1980s. Then shut it down. Then in the 1990s, AA bought Reno Air and briefly had a hub/ presence in San Jose again through 2001/2002. Then shut it down again. AA had it twice.

AWACSooner wrote:
ckfred wrote:
airplanedaj wrote:
After AA bought Air Cal, SJC was supposed to act as a connecting hub between cities along the West Coast and points east of the Rockies.
.

Actually, it was RenoAir (QQ) that had the SJC hub when AA bought them out in the late 90's.
 
gwrudolph
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 2:54 pm

Dominion301 wrote:
77H wrote:
Dominion301 wrote:

Wouldn't SEA be a top 20 PSA to add to DL's roster? Actually DTW must still be in the top 20, ditto ATL. Mind you PHX for AA must be as well.


The success of a hub can't be measured by population of the MSA alone. The economic strength or GDP of a city/MSA would be a stronger indicator of a hub's success than pure population. A hub isn't likely to be successful if a vast majority of its populace cannot afford a plane ticket. There are obvious exceptions to this based on hub type (O&D vs Transfer Focus, Geographically Isolated, etc).

77H


Yup. Hence why places like CLT and SLC pull way above their weight.


I'm of the opinion that places like CLT and SLC pull way above their weight because of market dominance by the hub carrier . . .
 
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Polot
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 2:58 pm

gwrudolph wrote:
I'm of the opinion that places like CLT and SLC pull way above their weight because of market dominance by the hub carrier . . .

And those hub carriers have such size/market dominance because there are few viable and competitive alternative hub locations in the Southeast and especially Rocky Mountain regions. If there were more hub locations available in the SE, for example, AA and DL would probably be smaller at CLT/ATL respectively than current due to increased competition for connecting traffic.

Hence why UA is weak in the SE and AA is weak in the Rocky Mountains region compared to their US3 peers.
 
NYC2SFO
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 4:39 pm

jasoncrh wrote:
In the 1980s, AirCal had the San Jose hub. AA first started building a hub on the back of that acquisition in the 1980s. Then shut it down. Then in the 1990s, AA bought Reno Air and briefly had a hub/ presence in San Jose again through 2001/2002. Then shut it down again. AA had it twice.

AWACSooner wrote:
ckfred wrote:

Actually, it was RenoAir (QQ) that had the SJC hub when AA bought them out in the late 90's.


This one baffles me, as they left one of the largest corporate travel markets to LCCs and UA, which operate a fortress out of SFO. It seems like they have handed all of this business to UA. Not just any business, but high yielding, short/medium/long haul business on a platter to UA. While down the coast, LAX is more of a mix of the big 3. I'm not sure of the LAX market share split, but the Bay Area having so much potential, I can't wrap by head around it. Smartly so, DL now has SFO BOS, which is P2P route (maybe F2P)?
 
commavia
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 5:04 pm

NYC2SFO wrote:
This one baffles me, as they left one of the largest corporate travel markets to LCCs and UA, which operate a fortress out of SFO. It seems like they have handed all of this business to UA. Not just any business, but high yielding, short/medium/long haul business on a platter to UA. While down the coast, LAX is more of a mix of the big 3. I'm not sure of the LAX market share split, but the Bay Area having so much potential, I can't wrap by head around it. Smartly so, DL now has SFO BOS, which is P2P route (maybe F2P)?


While the Bay Area is unquestionably one of the largest and wealthiest metro areas, and business travel markets, in the U.S., I think the question was then and remains now whether or not it's large enough, given both its scale and its geographical location, to profitably support two network carrier hubs.

AA's challenge at SJC was ultimately the same challenge it faced with just about all of the ex-Reno Air network - the stage lengths were so short, and the city pairs so competitive, that it simply wasn't viable at AA's mainline cost levels. Now SFO certainly can and does work - extremely well, clearly - for United, at United's network carrier cost levels. But that's because United has now consolidated its position as the dominant airline for premium business traffic in the region. Could the Bay Area, especially after the tech bubble collapse, have supported AA, at AA's network carrier cost levels, flying 100 daily flights in and out of SJC, on top of United's permanently-larger hub up the highway at SFO? I doubt it.

The closest I think we'll ever see again is going to be Alaska - which, while not a purely low-cost carrier, obviously does have far lower costs than a network carrier. I definitely think Alaska has a real opportunity to be a large (even larger) competitive force in the Bay Area and, when combined with Southwest, I think those three airlines will naturally be the "big 3" in the region - with AA and Delta naturally smaller.
 
johns624
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 5:32 pm

UpNAWAy wrote:
Some of Delta's non hub flying is not by choice but by HUB limitations. If space and operational issues are not a factor every one of the big 3 would prefer to do only Hub to Hub flying. Its the most profitable.

The other issue is MSP, DTW, SLC are O&D and business nothing burgers compared to PHL, CLT, MIA, IAH, DFW, DEN, ORD.
If you can fill a flight from one non-hub city to another, why not? DL has plenty of extra capacity in DTW and MSP. You might want to check the S&P 500 component companies. More have headquarters in MSP/DTW than MIA or DEN.
 
formeraa
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 6:28 pm

jasoncrh wrote:
In the 1980s, AirCal had the San Jose hub. AA first started building a hub on the back of that acquisition in the 1980s. Then shut it down. Then in the 1990s, AA bought Reno Air and briefly had a hub/ presence in San Jose again through 2001/2002. Then shut it down again. AA had it twice.

AWACSooner wrote:
ckfred wrote:

Actually, it was RenoAir (QQ) that had the SJC hub when AA bought them out in the late 90's.


And the backstory of the first SJC hub was that AA shut it down because the government allowed UA and AA to convert commuter only slots at ORD to mainline slots (<110 seat aircraft). So, the F100's designated for SJC were switched to ORD instead. Thus, the first drawdown at SJC.

Also, to correct an earlier post, BNA was originally intended for Southwest to/from Northeast flow and Midwest to/from Southeast flow. AA tried to make it profitable but just could not. RDU was originally meant for connections up and down the East Coast of the US. Again, it really wasn't profitable at the time. Basically, BNA and RDU were supposed to be AA's "ATL" hubs. The strategy failed.
 
AAvgeek744
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Thu Sep 14, 2017 8:18 pm

ckfred wrote:
airplanedaj wrote:
I think AA could easily build up their BOS and SFO operations a bit more, but they've tried and been unsuccessful with smaller focus cities (see BNA, STL, and SJC).


STL was TWA's primary hub, when AA completed the acquisition in 2001. BNA and SJC were both considered hubs, until competition made AA decide to start scaling back the hubs. The plan in the 1980s was to have traffic from smaller cities in the Southeast feed into BNA to connect to the Northeast, Midwest, and Southwest. After AA bought Air Cal, SJC was supposed to act as a connecting hub between cities along the West Coast and points east of the Rockies.

It seems to me that any P2P flying by UA or AA would be based on several considerations: the amount of flying between any two given points, whether either one of those points has a large number of F/F program members, and if any of those cities have traffic generated by a business with a contract with either carrier.


When AA opened RDU and BNA as hubs,I think the idea was RDU to be an east coast hub and BNA be more east to west. I still have an article from ATW Magazine where AA had to shift BNA to an omni-directional hub, which started overlapping some RDU flights. Those hubs were also pre-RJ. Not sure it would have mattered. BNA has been surpassing it's pax over the past couple of years compared to the AA hub, but fewer destination overall given most Eagle communities never got service back.
 
tphuang
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Fri Sep 15, 2017 1:56 am

commavia wrote:
NYC2SFO wrote:
This one baffles me, as they left one of the largest corporate travel markets to LCCs and UA, which operate a fortress out of SFO. It seems like they have handed all of this business to UA. Not just any business, but high yielding, short/medium/long haul business on a platter to UA. While down the coast, LAX is more of a mix of the big 3. I'm not sure of the LAX market share split, but the Bay Area having so much potential, I can't wrap by head around it. Smartly so, DL now has SFO BOS, which is P2P route (maybe F2P)?


While the Bay Area is unquestionably one of the largest and wealthiest metro areas, and business travel markets, in the U.S., I think the question was then and remains now whether or not it's large enough, given both its scale and its geographical location, to profitably support two network carrier hubs.

AA's challenge at SJC was ultimately the same challenge it faced with just about all of the ex-Reno Air network - the stage lengths were so short, and the city pairs so competitive, that it simply wasn't viable at AA's mainline cost levels. Now SFO certainly can and does work - extremely well, clearly - for United, at United's network carrier cost levels. But that's because United has now consolidated its position as the dominant airline for premium business traffic in the region. Could the Bay Area, especially after the tech bubble collapse, have supported AA, at AA's network carrier cost levels, flying 100 daily flights in and out of SJC, on top of United's permanently-larger hub up the highway at SFO? I doubt it.

The closest I think we'll ever see again is going to be Alaska - which, while not a purely low-cost carrier, obviously does have far lower costs than a network carrier. I definitely think Alaska has a real opportunity to be a large (even larger) competitive force in the Bay Area and, when combined with Southwest, I think those three airlines will naturally be the "big 3" in the region - with AA and Delta naturally smaller.


not sure about that. AS with its current offering can't really challenge UA for premium flyers in bay area. It challenges WN as the Californian local carrier of choice. And with AS program downgrading since AA/DL/AM are no longer partners airlines and KE/AF/KL likely leaving also, I just don't see how it can challenge UA for premium flyers.

On the other hand, Delta is a large threat to UA at SFO, since it has hubs at LAX, SEA, NYC, BOS, SLC, all pretty large corporate O&D out of SFO. That's why UA came down so hard when DL entered BOS-SFO and that has worked out pretty well.
 
JRL3289
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Fri Sep 15, 2017 2:34 am

MIflyer12 wrote:
JRL3289 wrote:
wn676 wrote:
I think the better question is, is DL's strategy even worth pursuing? I've always been under the assumption they do it more out of necessity than choice. And as we've seen in the past, p2p and focus city operations have historically always been the first to go from the hub airlines' networks during economic downturns.


I think this is worth a second mention. Compared to DL, AA and UA--either combined or individually--dominate most of the largest markets in the US. Out of the top 20 primary statistical areas (PSAs) in the US, DL has hubs in 3 (NYC, LA, Boston), AA has 7 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, Dallas, Philadelphia, Miami) and UA has 6 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Houston). Yes, DL has a stranglehold on the markets like ATL, DTW and MSP, but it seems like they have a compelling need to supplement what AA and UA have in places like ORD/DFW/IAH/EWR/PHL/MIA/IAD/DCA with their focus city strategy.


Inconvenient facts get in the way of your argument. Compared to UA, DL flies more domestic revenue passenger miles at higher yields - in spite of UA's dominance. DL has higher yields than AA, too.


No, those facts aren't relevant because the discussion is not about yields or system size.
 
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DolphinAir747
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Fri Sep 15, 2017 3:13 am

What routes does UA do that don't touch EWR, IAD, ORD, IAH, DEN, SFO, LAX, or GUM?

I can think of:
HNL-NRT
MSY-CUN
SAT-CUN
AUS-CUN
LGA-MTJ

What else?
 
BAINY3
Posts: 28
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Fri Sep 15, 2017 3:27 am

DolphinAir747 wrote:
What routes does UA do that don't touch EWR, IAD, ORD, IAH, DEN, SFO, LAX, or GUM?

I can think of:
HNL-NRT
MSY-CUN
SAT-CUN
AUS-CUN
LGA-MTJ

What else?

Several remaining routes from CLE (although maybe you meant to include that in your list):
CLE-MCO
CLE-CUN
CLE-FLL
CLE-RSW
CLE-SJU
CLE-BOS
CLE-MKE
CLE-LGA
CLE-DCA
CLE-CHS

Also:
NRT-ICN (but that ends in six weeks)
 
TUSDawg23
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Re: Would UA and/or AA adopt a similar p2p/focus city strategy to keep up with DL?

Fri Sep 15, 2017 4:11 am

delta747tlv wrote:
JRL3289 wrote:
I think this is worth a second mention. Compared to DL, AA and UA--either combined or individually--dominate most of the largest markets in the US. Out of the top 20 primary statistical areas (PSAs) in the US, DL has hubs in 3 (NYC, LA, Boston), AA has 7 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, Dallas, Philadelphia, Miami) and UA has 6 (NYC, LA, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Houston). Yes, DL has a stranglehold on the markets like ATL, DTW and MSP, but it seems like they have a compelling need to supplement what AA and UA have in places like ORD/DFW/IAH/EWR/PHL/MIA/IAD/DCA with their focus city strategy.



Top 20 PSAs (Per Wikipedia)

1) New York (DL,AA,UA)
2) Los Angeles (DL,AA,UA)
3) Chicago (AA,UA)
4) DC (UA,AA)
5) San Francisco (UA)
6) Boston (DL)
7) DFW (AA)
8) Philly (AA)
9) Miami (AA)
10) Houston (UA)
11) Atlanta (DL)
12) Detroit (DL)
13) Seattle (DL)
14) Phoenix (AA)
15) Minneapolis (DL)
16) Cleveland (UA focus city)
17) Denver (UA)
18) San Diego
19) Portland
20) Orlando (DL?)

So Delta has 7 (plus Orlando maybe), AA has 8 , and UA 7 and a focus city, pretty balanced.

loisencroach wrote:
All of DL's hubs (SEA included) are in metropolitan areas that are experiencing growth at or above 10%. DTW is the noted exception and will probably stay that way for awhile.

None of the PSAs show over 10% growth (per Wiki at least) but some showing at least 8-9% (Houston,Miami,Denver,Portland,Orlando) and only Cleveland and Detroit show a decline


I would argue that MSA's are a better indicator of population than PSA's. The top 5 MSA's by population without a hub or large focus city with one of the big 3 are:

1. Riverside-San Bernadino-Ontario, CA(ONT)
2. San Diego-Carlsbad, CA(SAN)
3. Tampa-St Petersburg-Clearwater, FL(TPA)
4. St. Louis, MO-IL(STL)
5. Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, MD(BWI)

Orlando, San Antonio, and Portland MSAs are not far behind.

If you look at a combination of overall population in the MSA, population growth since 2010, geography, airport infrastructure, and economic growth, I would say my top 5 spots for a focus city would be:

1. TPA-Top 20 MSA by population, 9% estimated pop growth since 2010, good airport infrastructure.
2. MCO-Just out of top 20 MSA by population, but 14% estimated pop growth since 2010, thriving economy, good airport infrastructure
3. SAT or AUS-Great geography, huge economic and population growth since 2010, good airport infrastructure.
4. LAS-10% population growth since 2010, good airport infrastructure, two new professional sports teams(NFL Raiders and NHL Knights).
5. BNA-11% population growth since 2010, tons of economic opportunity being created, good airport infrastructure.

I think you can make arguments for MCI, SJC, IND, CMH, and PDX as well. The problem with the top 5 MSA's I listed in my first list have to do with proximity to a larger hub(BWI to IAD, ONT to LAX), little economic and population growth(STL), and airport infrastructure(SAN).

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