A Closer Look at American’s Focus on Increasing Network Superiority


I already tackled the commercial strategy laid out in American’s investor presentation from earlier this week, but these charts just keep calling my name. Today, I want to focus in on one specifically that shows American’s competitive advantage, as defined by American. American says it offers a superior network in an increasing percentage of its markets. Is that true? Maybe. Let’s look at the data.

slide via American Airlines

The above chart is the crux of American’s strategic vision, and it shows — albeit again with a wildly-skewed and misleading Y axis — that American is increasingly becoming the airline with the most superior network in the markets it serves. This chart was yet another that I could try to replicate using Cirium data, but not all the details were clear. Instead of trying to match it exactly, I went with a peak day (Monday) in March 2024 and another in 2019. It turns out, that day was March 11 in each year.

The mice type says this was for Continental US and short-haul Latin American spokes, so I took out American’s hubs and included the Continental US, Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean in the data set. I then looked at markets where American has an advantage over both Delta and United in either flight frequency or number of destinations served. Later, I added Southwest into the mix, because I think it matters.

With this data in hand, I could really dive into this claim that American is increasing network superiority. Buckle up, and let’s go…

Starting with just the big three, American in 2024 has a superior network — according to its definition — in 68.2 percent of the 277 markets it serves in my dataset whereas in 2019 it was superior in 60.2 percent of the 279 markets. That is pretty close to what American’s slide says, so I figure I’m more or less using the right data here. Even if it’s not perfect, this will tell the story.

American Advantage Market Breakdown 2024 vs 2019

Data via Cirium

This means there was a good eight-point growth in superiority, but we can’t just leave it at the high level, because there is nuance here. I broke the “superior” markets out into three different subsets as you can see above.

Southwest Overlap

Let’s first take a look at the Southwest overlap markets. In 2019, just shy of 4 percent of markets would flip from American-superior to Southwest once that airline is included in the set. That number is just over 6 percent in 2024.

American makes the argument that it is a global network carrier, so it will have a leg up on attracting those passengers in these cities over Southwest, especially those with a global need. That may be true, but in some of these markets, Southwest has a distinct advantage, including our old friend El Paso.

Back in 2019, American had 19 flights to 4 destinations from El Paso and Southwest had 18 flights to 9 destinations. Even including Southwest, American could consider El Paso a market where it was superior because it had more flights.

In 2024, however, American has only 14 flights to 4 destinations while Southwest has surged to having 26 flights to 10 destinations. Yet in American’s data, it still calls itself the superior carrier here. That will be true for a subset of the population, but it’s certainly a tougher battle than in other types of markets.

American-Only Markets

You’d think that having network superiority in a market requires there to be another airline over which American can be superior, but that’s not the case. Nearly 18 percent of American’s total markets in 2019 and just over 21 percent in 2024 are markets that American serves but Delta and United do not, and those count in the data.

This doesn’t take away from the fact that American has the best network in town, but it’s not like there’s any competition. American is just trying to find markets that don’t make sense for others.

First, we can look at new American-only markets that are served in 2024 but were not served in 2019.

New American Markets Since 2019 – Map generated by the Great Circle Mapper – copyright © Karl L. Swartz.

Regardless of how I feel about anything else, I absolutely love what American has been doing south of the border. American has figured out how to push primarily regional jets into some of these secondary markets that hold real promise. Using Miami, DFW, and Phoenix, American can go into markets that others can’t serve either because their hubs don’t have the demand or they’re too far away to operate on short runways. The more American can find markets like these, the better off it will be, but it’s not clear how many more there are like this.

Further, most (but not all) of these are nice vacation spots but they aren’t going to really sway loyalty from, say, a person in El Paso. Sure, if someone is flying to Tortola Beef Island, they’ll probably fly American there. But it’s not a place most people will go frequently enough to make them shift all their flying. In other words, there is a benefit to being in these markets, but I don’t view them as having the same benefit of network superiority as in domestic markets where there is more business, visiting friends and relatives (VFR) traffic, and competition.

Let’s flip this around now. American has also left a bunch of markets between 2019 and 2024.

Abandoned American Markets Since 2019 – Map generated by the Great Circle Mapper – copyright © Karl L. Swartz.

Almost all of these are small markets that are near other stations that American serves. They also had weak fares and often poor loads. (I assume Cap Haitien is unrelated… probably just an issue of being in Haiti where nobody wants to be flying right now.) Trading these old, poor-performing markets in for the new markets seems good… but then again, American wants to live in the bottom 200, and these are the kinds of markets that fit solidly in that strategy. (Toledo is the largest of these markets based on 2023 seats coming in at #155 from the bottom while Cheyenne is lowest coming in at #12 from the bottom.)

Not all changes, however, are due to American doing the work. Some of them come from other airlines abandoning markets, leaving American alone, as you see below.

Like American, Delta and United have done their share of walking away from small markets. In these cases above, American remains the only one left standing. Often these are markets that are close to other markets those airlines serve… like United flying to Santa Rosa from the San Francisco hub nearby or College Station from Houston. American sees more value as the only remaining legacy carrier with hubs that are further.

Shifting Superiority

American has made much less progress in gaining superiority in competitive markets than it otherwise would appear. It has really only gained two points since 2019 instead of the eight we talked about above after taking out the two categories just mentioned. But even within those two points, there has been a lot of shifting.

First, let’s take a look at the markets where American didn’t have superiority in 2019 but does in 2024. (And this time, I included Southwest in the evaluation.)

2024 AA Dominant Markets But Not 2019 – Map generated by the Great Circle Mapper – copyright © Karl L. Swartz.

In most cases, this is a game of inches and not really indicative of some big change. Let’s use a few examples to help.

  • Corpus Christi – In 2019, American had 6 flights while Southwest had 4 but United had 7. In 2024, American is up to 7 flights while United has dropped to 6 and Southwest remains at 4.
    Summary: American adds a flight, United cuts a flight, and that shifts the balanceminor improvement
  • Fargo – In 2019, American had 5 flights while Delta had 8 and United has 7. In 2024, all three are at 5 flights, but since American serves more destinations now (3 vs 2), it gets crowned as dominant.
    Summary: There aren’t a lot of flights in this market from any airline, but American has 1 more destination than the others… medium improvement
  • Lexington – In 2019, American had 13 flights and United had 7 but Delta had 14. In 2024, American is still at 13, but Delta dropped to 9 and United dropped to 4.
    Summary: Delta and United dropped, leaving American well on top… notable improvement
  • Madison – In 2019, American had 14 flights with United right behind at 13, but both trailed Delta at 18. In 2024, American has only 12 flights while United is at 9, but Delta is actually at 13, still ahead. The difference here is that in 2019, Delta served 6 destinations while American was at 5. They’ve flipped in 2024, so now American calls it dominant.
    Summary: Delta still has more flights, but American serves one extra destination… minor improvement
  • Wichita – In 2019, American had 9 flights while Delta and 6 and Southwest 4, but United had 12. In 2024, American is up to 11 flights while United has dropped to 9. Southwest is up to 5 and Delta is down to 4.
    Summary: United’s dip is American’s gain… notable improvement

As you can see, it’s a nice statistic to throw around, but it’s hard to say that American is truly superior in all of these markets. In some, American has greatly improved its standing. In others, it’s more of a minor shift. The significance feels overstated when you’re using a binary metric like American is superior or it isn’t.

Another thing we need to look at here is a list of those markets where American was dominant in 2019 but is now no longer. It is a shorter list, but it does exist.

2019 AA Dominant Markets But Not 2024 – Map generated by the Great Circle Mapper – copyright © Karl L. Swartz.

There’s that pesky El Paso which I mentioned, and that is because of Southwest. But where you really see the concentration here is in the northeast, and yes, note that these tend to be more mid-size markets than what we see on the other map.

For example, in Manchester (NH), American was at 11 flights with Southwest at 9, Delta at 5, and United at 3. Now, American is down to 7, Southwest is flat, Delta is out, and United is at 2. This shows as a negative using the binary metric, but the gap between American and Delta and United has grown significantly with American having the real potential to make gains.

On the other hand, in 2019 in Burlington, American had 10 flights while Delta and United each had 9. By 2024, American had dropped to 7, equal to United, with Delta down to 6. All three airlines serve 3 markets from Burlington today. That’s a case where American did lose its superiority, but there’s likely a more minor impact.

In the end, the takeaway is that this is far from a slam dunk assertion that American has significantly increased its network superiority to the level it wants us to believe. It’s a high-level take, using data that lacks nuance. And now that both Delta and United know where American is targeting, it wouldn’t surprise me to see some changes on their side to counter some of what American is trying to do anyway.

It feels like American decided on a strategy and then went looking for the data to back it up. This certainly does that from a high level, but I’d argue there’s a lot more work for American to do to actually reach the kind of impact it’s trying to convey it has made.

Get Cranky in Your Inbox!

The airline industry moves fast. Sign up and get every Cranky post in your inbox for free.

58 comments on “A Closer Look at American’s Focus on Increasing Network Superiority

  1. Reading this part two analysis, it makes me feel even more that (at least in the east coast) this has to do with American having hubs at LGA and DCA. They can’t fly the big planes to big places from there so let’s do a magic trick and show them how incredible they are at midsized cities! So I get why they are doing this, but yes it feels a bit forcing a narrative…

  2. Obviously only one market, but look for AA to increase their lead in MSN. Last year they were constrained by terminal construction. Now, they’re in a brand new facility, have upgauged equipment, and are frankly offering a better product (and flight options) than either DL or UA.

    1. Don’t know if you herd, but it looks as if Madison’s airport may move to outside Vancouver Canada. If it does, then you would have MSNBC.

    2. To put some numbers behind your comment, I compared July 2023 to whats selling for July 2024, understanding it is subject to change.

      Deps: 2023: 393 | 2024: 434. +10.4%
      Seats: 2023: 37,624 | 2024: 42,530 +13%

    3. Didn’t DL dominate MSN thanks to the old NWA Midwest strategy days? Guess those days are a long time ago lol!

      1. Bill – Heck yeah, the Heartland Strategy which was to win the upper Midwest by making sure there was no other option. You had to appreciate the ruthlessness of Northwest, and I think some of that is showing its face in American. (CEO Robert Isom did, after all, spend a good chunk of time at NW.)

          1. Are they though? It depends on how you look at the data. If you look at the US census bureau definition of the Midwest and look at the ASMs of the largest carriers in the Midwest then sure, DL is the largest by a fair amount (39M ASMs in 2024 compared to UA’s 30M, DL also leads in seats and flights). But isn’t that just because DL has two hubs in the Midwest and UA and AA only have one? Are those hubs really serving the Midwest? Sort of. They absolutely create lots of opportunities for locals of MSP, DTW, and nearby regions (and ORD, for UA and AA) to travel, but they’re also full of connecting pax from all over the world. Great for the hubs, but not necessarily serving the Midwest. If you pull the same data ignoring hubs you’ll find that AA has 9.6M ASMs and DL 6.9M (AA also has more seats and flights). In a sense then, AA (I’m shocked it’s not UA) is doing the best job serving the Midwest as a whole with greater reach to the non-hub cities (plus a decent-sized hub thrown in the mix). Of course, a lot of AA’s ASMs are coming from longer flights to CLT and DFW, providing the Midwest with greater connectivity than simply routing everyone through ORD, MSP, or DTW. If you want to look at it in terms of simple coverage then UA serves 51 Midwestern cities, which is 1 more than DL (a negligible difference, AA serves 44), so you’d say that UA and DL reach about the same number of customers, though with varying levels of coverage.

            Long story short, it depends on how you look at the numbers.

            1. Timmeh doesn’t look at numbers in any way that puts Delta in a subordinate position.

  3. I get why you didn’t talk about the incremental network superiority Alaska provides since AA didn’t either (why would they on their investor day)… but Any chat about aa network superiority really should include Alaska since it does add significantly to AA’s biggest weakness on the west coast. the combined strength of Alaska and Aa in many markets (for example where Alaska flies out of austin so aa doesn’t need to) does enable incremental AA loyalty in a city since AAdvantage members are recognized the same for upgrades and status as if they were flying aa.

    It enables Aa to start routes like IDA that they probably would not have before (and arguably Aa has the best network in ida when you consider AS combined with three destinations; this should be an example of a spoke that delta should dominate given proximity to SLC and their sea hub but they don’t due to the aa/as network). Even just the network strength of ELP (don’t think I’ve read so much about ELP service) mentioned is strengthened by the AS relationship

    1. But does it? Really? I think IDA is a bad example. As someone who’s work takes them extensively through the Intermountain West, nothing is ever easy. Distances, Mountains, Weather. Sure, AA+AS has…three destinations… compared to Delta’s one. But the 6am Flight to Dallas should really be the mid-day flight to Phoenix. Because going to PHX at any time means you are probably double connecting to get back east (probably Charlotte JFC) if you are lucky and the 3pm AS flight is basically useless if you are trying to head east at all. Also, the PHX is seasonal and disappears in summer, it’s really a winter sunbird route. Granted PHX (in winter) and SEA work if you are covering the great distances out west, but the DFW and PHX flights are also on CRJ7s….two+ hours flights inside a rattle can…shoot me now. And I can’t believe I’m defending Delta here, but they’ve “upgauged” from the CRJs to E75s and even if it is one destination, SLC has better banks and connectivity especially eastbound than AA does at PHX and honestly the Tour de DFW on landing or take-off just boggles my mind how inefficient that airport and gate assignment/dispatch are.

      1. Fair point on inter-mountain travel. No real disagreement with you there but SEA and DFW can take you to FAR more many places domestically or globally than SLC can. But, point well taken on my example and inter-mountain travel is definitely not going to be the strength for AA/AS in IDA. But it is a spoke that would’ve seemed a bit far-fetched for AA to start absent the AS relationship.
        In my opinion, the AA/AS strength is most pronounced in cities like AUS or even SAN where it could be argued that AA is just supplementing AS at this point but it certainly helped AA’s position in a market like SAN from a loyalty perspective (i.e credit cards and Aadvantage)

        I am a bit surprised the flights to IDA are still on Skywest. I would’ve expected an upgauge to the Envoy E175 as well for that length.

        1. “No real disagreement with you there but SEA and DFW can take you to FAR more many places domestically or globally than SLC can.” — That’s true for now, but wait 10 years and for 18 days in February in 2034 that will be very much not true haha.

        2. AUS isn’t a particularly shining example of AS taking over for AA, as AS traffic has dropped more significantly recently than AA has. We lost the AUS-SJC nerd bird (though Southwest still flies that) and BOI is gone as well, so you’re looking at SEA/PDX/SFO/SAN from AS and nothing else.

          If AS wasn’t aligned I’d actually expect to see *more* service from them here, most notably to LAX. AA would probably also hit either SFO or SJC on their metal, and maybe SEA, albeit almost certainly a few E75s on the former and 1x A319 on the latter, so AS does provide additional options. And yes, there are some points where AA flies from here that likely wouldn’t exist but for the AS base on the other end, most notably PSP. But the impact AS has in AUS has dwindled over the past year

          Not that I’m complaining about the alliance; AS’s status match to DL is how I have high OW status for the rest of this year, and AS got themselves a credit card customer out of the deal. But that was only tenable here due to AA’s network; I fly AS/regional metal on average one round trip per year.

          1. Are you suggesting there is AUS-PSP service because of the partnership with Alaska??? That is an interesting conclusion. PSP demand is almost exclusively as a destination (not as a point of origin), and I don’t see how the AS partnership affects PSP-AUS. It is simply because people in Austin want to visit PSP, with the bonus of any connection traffic (which would be more efficiently carried over DFW connections and not a reason for AUS-PSP nonstop).

            Also, PSP is a SkyWest maintenance base, so any E175 flying here contributes to the efficiency of getting aircraft to/from the mx hangar.

    2. MaxPower – It’s a fair point, but it doesn’t seem like American is really considering it. I’m also not sure how much that does for American’s loyalty, because I imagine most people in the mountain west will be more loyal to Alaska and then just use American if needed. I need to look into that one more.

      1. And here I thought the airline for the Intermountain West was United . . . East via Denver, West via SFO, and sometimes south via LAX.

  4. Cranky, just one quick correction. AA still flies to ORH, with one token flight a day to JFK, presumably to make MassPort happy. It shows up when I search DIIO for March 2024. Not sure why it didn’t show up for you. It’s pretty lame service, but it’s service nonetheless

    1. dfw88- Oh shoot, I miscategorized that. It’s not that AA left, it’s just Delta went into it, so American no longer had the monopoly.

  5. “new American-only markets” includes LTO. Unless I misinterpret “American-only”, that seems to be a mistake. Loreto has long been an AS destination from LAX and more recently and I think seasonally from SFO.

    (nice place to visit, too, by the way)

    1. Oliver – AA doesn’t count Alaska in this whole thing. Only Delta and United were included, but I added Southwest because I think it really matters.

  6. As a marketer, my professional brain always looks for “but can I sell whatever benefit, USP or angle they find or strategy they pursue to my target audience?”

    I struggle with all three major carriers, but perhaps AA is onto something here.

    Delta is focusing on (from what I gather looking at their PR page) connectivity: a local to global network, and a seamless experience that ties all apps, inflight entertainment and travel needs together called “Delta Sync”. Their ad campaign showed that they are local around the world (“Kaleidoscope”). Is that enough to entice enough travelers to choose Delta, which is also known for older aircraft, extremely low value frequent flyer points and slightly more expensive pricing?

    United’s campaign is called “Good leads the way” and is about… ermmm… I think it is something like good network, good people, good planes? They are no different than Delta, in that they demonstrate their local to global connectivity. They seem to showcase more of their planes (as they are newer) but, like DL, like to show they are as much at home in Paris as they are in Charleston.

    So DL and UA have a lot of focus on local to global. “Network Superiority” in the domestic market and the claim that American’s “superiority” is growing vs the others is perhaps a sellable proposition. It may result in (I hope) a replacement for their current nothingburger campaign “You are why we fly”. Let’s be honest… most people in Duluth or Rochester are not flying to Bangkok or Sao Paulo. They are flying to New York, San Francisco or a vacation destination in Florida or the Caribbean. That is where AA wants to play.

    It follows that they will compete more with SWA, B6 and all the ULCC’s in the smaller markets. AA’s claim there might be relevant for customers: more flights, more choice, more schedule and date flexibility. As an example: fly from anywhere, USA to CLT and you have 12 daily’s to Orlando (Spirit has 2, all others have zero non-stops), and 19 daily’s across the three New York airports.

    As per my comments on yesterday’s analysis, I am not saying that AA’s strategy will work. But it is a different approach vs their two main rivals as well as the ULCC’s. No colorful demonstrations of backpacking in the Amazon, or visiting the canals of Venice, Italy. Their emerging promise might be “you have places to go in the USA? AA will get you to all of them, all the time”.

    Now all they need to do is choose a different aircraft interior. All three mainlines have the same blue hues. Choosing to be different there… now that is something that would truly set them apart.

  7. The idea of ‘superior network” from a city is very nuanced. For example, are AA’s 5 departures from FAR to 3 different destinations really superior to Delta’s 5 departures to MSP? Delta’s schedule is definitely more usable from a business sense in that they have coverage throughout the day. They also mix in mainline equipment. AA’s schedule may technically connect to more destinations but 3 of those departures are RONs, leaving little flexibility.

    1. Exactly. This whole thing is a distinction without a difference. Neither is “dominance” so it’s basically all a word salad of meaninglessness.

      1. Doesn’t dominance only matter if that airline has the pricing power in that market? For example, if AA has more flights to more cities out of XYZ, but Southwest sets all the fares and AA matches, then isn’t WN the dominant carrier at XYZ? Economically speaking

  8. The whole argument of superiority in outstations is meaningless because it is only accounting for point-to-point traffic. Network carriers rely on connecting traffic to flow through their hubs. Is it really superior to be able to fly from Small Town, USA to DFW, ORD and PHX, or is it superior to be able to get to hubs which provide the most connecting opportunities? Whichever airline offers the most connections and destinations for these markets should wear the superiority crown. It’s why adding incremental service or new destinations has an exponential return for a network carrier, compared to a ULCC or P2P carrier.

  9. This whole network superiority thing must be spin invented by Brian Znotins.

    His plan to shrink Uniteds network was a disaster and now they’re spending billions to rectify his mistakes.

    So if you’re him and need to tell investors about your growth plan (which he does not believe in) what do you? You come up with this crap

    1. it was hardly Znotin’s plan. That direction was from Smizek. He just did the bidding of a C suite that was convinced shrinking to profitability was the way to go…

      1. He was fired from United.

        Coincidently United significantly expanded widebody operations domestically after he left.

        Znotins today is talking about how AA shouldn’t have too many widebodies internationally, and he bragged about retiring all those 757s/767s/A330s, not to mention 787 deferrals while AA has a WB shortage.

        1. And? None of that has anything to do with who had the idea and strategy of shrinking to profitability. It was Smizek. We could talk about Oscar but the guy had no strategy whatsoever which is why when Scott was brought in he then fired the brand new network C suite member (which wasn’t Znotins btw)
          Scott Kirby came in and brought his own AA team with him. No surprise there.

  10. The most accurate take on AA’s strategy is that they recognize they cannot compete with other airlines in the largest and most competitive large markets either domestically or internationally and has decided to focus on small cities primarily connected to its two largest hubs, CLT and DFW.
    AA generated the most domestic revenue of any US airline in 2023 but lagged in many other metrics including with respect to its entire network. It also had system profitability on par with Southwest. which far trailed Delta, and to a smaller degree, United. Number of flights and destinations served when it is a matter of connecting to one or 3 hubs doesn’t really change anything that matters.
    And as much as some would like to count codeshare capacity, it belongs to the operating carrier. Only when a seat is sold can the revenue be tied to the marketing carrier. You can’t count capacity for two different carriers even in a JV.
    The big 3 are claiming very different reasons for their success (however that is defined), are building strategies on how they think they can expand on it, and can tout their success in many different ways.

    1. AA literally can’t compete in ORD, where they have long been hubbed (with UA), let alone in more competitive markets like LAX, NYC, etc. If they want to try and focus on La Crosse, Fargo and Burlington, VT – more power to them. But that strategy has it’s limits. And most of the smaller markets are still connected to the main hubs of each of the big 3 which is what counts.

      BTW Tim, your touting of DL’s “dominance” in the Midwest depends on how you define “Midwest” and also how you define “dominant”. Yes, they do dominate MSP and DTW. But AA is bigger in STL, and UA is waaaay bigger in ORD and is also dominant in CLE and, I believe, IND. DL is a non factor in many of these cities, yet UA still has a presence in all. WN is strong in most of the mid-sized Midwestern cities and actually flies nonstop to twice as many cities from MKE than DL does. A pattern repeated in many markets where you may think of DL as dominant.

  11. Looking at the analysis, I think a critical factor that was not considered was aircraft size/ seat count. Southwest clearly has more capacity in many of these markets since they are not flying any RJ’s. I would also say that as UA has reduced flight counts that have gone in many cases from a 50 seater to a mainline aircraft and 150 seats landing at the correct time to fully utilize a bank at DEN or ORD would provide a lot more opportunity to become the go to carrier than say 50 seaters spread throughout the day. Looking that deep into the data could get exceeding complicated, but total seat count could de a different factor to consider.

    1. Jason – Absolutely. That’s the whole point of American’s argument. It wants to be the leader in smaller airplanes, so that means having more frequency. Unit costs are ultimately higher, but American thinks it can get a revenue premium. So it isn’t worried about total seats. It’s worried about flight frequency and number of destinations.

      1. Interesting though that, as in the FAR example above, AA isn’t even emphasizing pure network connectivity. DL has better network connectivity with 5 flights to MSP compared to 5 flights to 3 cities. Once again it seems like they aren’t even sure what their strategy is.

  12. As someone observed above, Mark Twain made the definitive statement about issues like these when he observed, “There are three kinds of lies – lies, damned lies, and statistics.”

    This comment isn’t meant to impugn anyone’s integrity, but to question possible assumptions on all sides (including mine, I hope).

    Cranky is using Cirium data. I’m guessing American is using its proprietary internal accounting data. Anyone who’s watched Perry Mason knows that first hand evidence is preferred over second hand evidence. Robert Isom mentioned that American collects vast amount of data from its customers’ transactions. I’m guessing American’s management team knows better than any secondary source how and where its customers spend their money – and money usually tends a prime measure of what people truly want.

    I’m guessing that the people who comment on airline blogs represent less than one percent of all those who consume air travel. Are we really an indicator of what the public truly wants?

    The third point is what do the data, regardless of source, really show? I’m guessing very little. History is rife with once powerful companies that are no longer in business or are mere shadows of what they used to be. Many of those failures stemmed from reading the data wrong or misinterpreting trends. A number of airlines fit in here, names like Pan Am, TWA. and Eastern come immediately to mind – not to mention Sears, once the Amazon of its times, but now shell of its former self – because it didn’t react to the marketplace quickly enough. Is that going to be the case with American Airlines? Only time will tell.

    1. Ghost – Some slides used internal data, but I didn’t really look at those.
      The two I’ve picked apart in great detail this week say in the slide that it used Cirium data.

      1. The question still remains about the interpretation of the data. If American isn’t reading the data accurately, it could be devastating for its future viability. If we don’t read the data accurately it doesn’t make a difference.

          1. I’m not sure I “proved” anything, but I’m a firm believer in the idea that statistics don’t always reflect what’s really happening. As an avid sports fan, I find that especially true in that field (no pun intended).

  13. So they’re going to have 35% market share in lots of smaller markets with six or ten flights a day each, count on people getting their card and choosing AA over the other options. And oh, you wanted a seatback TV? Too bad.

    1. The problem with American’s moves is that you are flooding slots with small regional jets, clogging up not only the airspace, but taxiways/ runways. remember a slot occupied with a small regional is one not accessible to a larger plane that can hold two to four times the capacity. Yes I know there are airports that can only handle regionals, but that number is shrinking as a increasing number of them reduce or outright eliminate commercial service & others upgrade to accept larger jets .

  14. If I have a choice between AA & WN, I’ll choose WN
    Between AA & DL, I’m going with DL
    AA & AS, going with AS
    AA & B6, B6 wins

    The reason is very simple- Actual Customer Service, including doing the right thing when things go wrong.

    Has anyone ever heard AA mention Customer Service in any of their press releases of communications? No.

    Until they’re under new Management, I’ll spend my money elsewhere.

    1. Vive le difference. I wouldn’t choose DL or B6 under any circumstance. I’d select Greyhound before either of them.

  15. Any significant impact of the NWA unwind with B6 and swapped slots? These stats were as of March 2023, before the NWA got nixed, right?

  16. I don’t think you can fairly define “dominance as simply having the most flights out of an airport or even most nonstop destinations.

    Reality is DL is flying mainline aircraft on many of these routes while AA is flying regional jets only, thus requiring AA to have more flights in order to compete on a seat basis.

    Sure, there’s a handful of places that only AA serves due to their geographic advantages with their hubs. Good for them.

    But can you really claim to be “dominant” in cities where DL is sending 737, a320, or even 717’s while AA is only flying E-175, ERJ, and CRJ? Are you really “superior” when you have to threaten half the plane to gate check or pink tag their bags? Are you really dominant when you have to undercut DL on price?

    The high-ups at my company eschew AA’s direct service to DCA in favor of a connection at ATL. That says a lot.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Cranky Flier