If US disappears tomorrow, the level of nonstops in the CLT
market remain the same....NIL.
US hasn't flown into the state of Utah for some years.
I disagree that DL
would automatically "JUMP" on the SLC
route if US goes under. What would this accomplish?
The alert KCRW said it first, HP
is already providing a west coast link to PHX
, giving RDU
passengers one-stop access to much of the west, in fact much more than what a DL
connection in SLC
I disagree with those that feel if US goes away, CLT
will become a ghost-town forever, it's hub status somehow re-appearing at some other airport....
Remember, at one time, Eastern provided the majority of lift out of CLT
. Piedmont was born as a Local Service airline, providing access only to the smaller regional cities that were unavailable via Eastern.
It was only after de-regulation, and the demise of Eastern 10 years past, that Piedmont, and eventually US, became the dominant carrier it is now in the region. The point is, CLT
will remain as the prime focus of airline operations in the Mid-Atlantic region. (Off-topic, I think if US makes it out of BK, they should rename the whole damn airline PIEDMONT! Go back to basics. The PIEDMONT name is still held in high regard by many in the Southeast US.)
This is not to say RDU
will stagnate, hardly, RDU
will continue to grow, but within a totally different environmental model.
Look for additional flights to major cities of the West, instead of into a hub of questionable worth.
Western developed the SLC
hub as one that was central to much of it's network. The bonus came in the fact that, as a part of a smaller carrier, it worked, and worked well, credited by some as what kept WA
out of bankruptcy.
In relation to the much larger carrier that DL
is, it's a wonder that it's lasted as long as it has. In recent years, DFW
and the explosive growth of CVG
made much of SLC
redundant. (Many cities have seen their DL
service switch from SLC
The only exclusive routes out of SLC
were to some of the smallest cities in the nation with airline service. Only now that DL
is preparing to "De-Hub" DFW
, is SLC
is back in vogue. For now.
The fact remains, the regional passengers available at SLC
are being gobbled up by leaner and stronger airlines in WN
80% of that regional traffic through SLC
is destined for one of the 6 major west coast metropolitan centers; Pacific Northwest, Northern Cal, Southern Cal, Phoenix and Las Vegas.
Competition between WN
have allowed PHX
to collectively usurp the hub status of SLC
. A primary reason is the obvious greater O&D opportunities available.
As the P2P phenomenom continues to spread and grow, look for those smaller cities with hubs and focus operations (such as SLC
) to fade away in favor of routes that self-sufficient.......
To make a long story short, RDU
is much more likely to get added nonstops to California and the Pacific Northwest, maybe 3 or 4 more additional destinations, but not SLC