How Do Airlines Decide on What Their Hubs Are?

Hey everyone. I just thought I’d ask how airlines choose their hubs? For example, United has Washington Dulles, Chicago, etc and American has Dallas, Charlotte etc. So how do airlines pick their hubs? Thanks.

Most legacy airlines pick there hub in precise locations. For example. American Airlines. Hubs:

New York- connection to northeast Canada, Europe, and Boston region
Philadelphia- Northeast region
Charlotte- Eastern Region
Chicago- Canada, Central USA
Miami- Florida, Carriabean
Dallas- South America, Mexico, Texas
Phoenix- Midwestern USA, Western Mexico
Los Angeles- Wéstern USA, Hawaii, Australia, Asia

Every hub has a reason. But of course they overlap and American flies to Europe from LAX and flies to Mexico from Charlotte. Every hub is placed for a reason. It’s pretty amazing come to think about it! And @Trevor_A continues it right down below if you want to know more

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Airlines choose their hubs based on where they can see a flow of people coming through. For an example United has KSFO to service the west coast to Asia and Europe. They have KORD and KIAH to service all of the people in the midwest trying to connect to Europe and Asia. They have KEWR to outsource people from the East Coast. So they have flights to a bunch of smaller cities out of there hubs to get people to the bigger flights like Tokyo and London. So that’s how the determine there hub. Also they try to see where they can get the most gate space and most room to spread at the airport. If the airport is going to give them cheap prices for lots of gates most chances are an airline will jump in.
Hopefully that answer your question?

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They pick larger cities with higher amounts of travelers.

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Heres a good example, US air. They were founded in Pittsburgh so we were there main hub for a while. By tge 90s we were no longer there primary, but were still a hub. Post 9/11 there numbers were down, so they moved out. It decimated the airpors, some airlines start someware big, some move whare tve passengers are… 😢

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Try this link, https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Iur5WI1spTc

Explains it really well.

This one is pretty good too

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This is a really interesting video that explains about banked hubs and how hubs all serve different purposes.

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