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The new American could be asked to make few divestitures in the merger process with most routes and hubs located in strategic, rather than competing, locations around the U.S.
US Airways is the clear winner in the announced merger gaining access to American Airlines’ many domestic and international routes while American fills in some holes to its pervasive domestic coverage. The new airline will have nine hubs in Miami, New York, Dallas/Fort Worth, Chicago, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Washington, Phoenix and Charlotte, and it has come out with a state by state interactive chart and PDFs on those benefits, of course all PR positive.
The Justice Department is expected to approve the merger with few issues due to the complementary state of the airlines’ routes, but the new American could be asked to sell slots at US Airways’ hub at Washington’s Reagan National and Charlotte, N.C., and AMR’s hub in Dallas due to their overwhelming presence at those outposts.
The merged airline has calculated the number of flights and employees at each of nine hubs based on the 2013 schedule, and we’ve pointed out what that means to flyers at each location below.
This list, however, does not point out the potential drawbacks for customers at smaller regional airports around the U.S. where flights could be cut, nor does it touch on the fare hikes that could come as a result of the consolidated industry.
New York: The new American will have a significant presence in New York City, especially at New York LaGuardia airport where it holds 31.8 percent of slots, a new threat for Delta Air Lines. The biggest difference will be for US Airways flyers who will now have access to the oneworld alliance and greater options for international routes.
Pennsylvania: The US Airways’ hub at Philadelphia airport is currently undergoing redevelopment, and just in time as the new American is expected to turn PHL into more of a transatlantic gateway. The merger airline will offer 558 daily departures from Pennsylvania to 336 destinations around the world.
Washington, DC: American will enjoy domestic gains in the merger like US Airways’ strong presence at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. American Airline flyers will now have access to US Airways’ 231 flights out of the capital compared to just 58 beforehand.
North Carolina: Charlotte is another US Airways’ hub that will broaden American’s reach on the east coast. American flyers will gain access to US Airways’ 633 departures, while US Airways flyers are expected to see new domestic and international destinations become available.
Florida: American Airlines offers a staggering 309 flights out of its hub in Miami, but the merger means that flyers from both airlines will gain meaningful connections and departures at airports around the state. The biggest winners; however, will be US Airways flyers which will now be able to fly oneworld and American to international destinations.
Texas: Hub operations and maintenance for the new American Airlines will be located at the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport where millions of flyers will be connected on domestic flights. US Airway’s departures out of Texas just went from 43 to 993.
Illinois: The merger isn’t expected to have a big impact on Chicago where United Continental is based. US Airways had a very small presence at Chicago O’Hare, which will be folded into American as business carries on as usual.
Arizona: US Airways’ hub in Phoenix will be moved to Dallas-Fort Worth, but US Airways flyers won’t miss the scrappy airline when they realize they are gaining access to thousands of new routes. Approximately 10,100 employees will be based in Phoenix.
California: Neither airline has a particularly impressive presence in California outside of Los Angeles so the merged American will give flyers more domestic options across the state. US Airways flyers are also gaining valuable access to international destinations to the west of the U.S.