Newbiepilot wrote:bigjku wrote:strfyr51 wrote:At some point? Even Atlanta will run out of real estate if it hasn't already. So? The only other option would be to order new domestic airplanes to replace their smaller workhorse airplanes with a little larger workhorse airplane. Especially? if slots are going to become a premium as ATL is already pretty crowded. United and American are already on the "T" Concourse and there are no more NEW concourses (or OLD) that Delta doesn't control already,
Count the flights simply between Atlanta and Deltas other hubs or very high frequency destinations. Then look at the hourly flights between its other hubs that don’t touch Atlanta. Anything you see running hourly or close to it is a candidate to be consolidated to NMA provided it’s fairly cost competitive. That’s a lot of flights and planes without consider trans Atlantic or Latin destinations. Every one you can consolidate is one more destination or connection to a smaller market you can bring through the hub without adding physical gates.
The frequency on routes from Atlanta is astounding. Cities like Indianapolis, St Louis, Las Vegas, etc don’t need flights every 1-2 hours. Cities in Florida are even more frequent than that. ATL is continuously upgauging.
In some cases, they're already close to maxing out (without up-gauging to wide bodies) in cities where there are either gate constraints or other constraints.
For example, BOS and LGA to ATL are already running 321s (or 757s) hourly or close to it. Realistically, the market doesn't need more frequency, but demand isn't going to shrink in the coming years. I think that there are markets, mostly up and down the US east coast, where, short of some sort of real disruption (high speed rail? on-demand air travel?) the coming decades could look more like short haul Asia on wide bodies than the narrow body aircraft we've seen in the past few decades in the US.
The "loyalty" and "xyz airline will become all A or all B" conversations as they relate to aircraft acquisitions are nonsensical and the figments of the imaginations of people who proscribe their personal likes and dislikes on corporations making major capital expenditures on products.