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US Airways Won’t Take Regional Jets

If you remember back a year and a half ago or so, US Airways talked about how important 50 and 70 seat regional jets will be to their recovery. In fact, they were going to take several hundred over the next few years to rebuild their business. Well…that’s not going to happen. Embraer and Bombardier have cancelled financing for 100 regional jets because of US Airways’ 2nd bankruptcy, leaving the airline without a key piece of its recovery plan. If US Airways ever emerges from bankruptcy, it will have to shrink significantly. With the closure of the Pittsburgh hub, it’s taken an important first step…let’s see if Charlotte is next.

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  1. I think it’s unlikely they’ll shut down the Charlotte hub. Yes, it lacks substantial origin and destination (O&D) traffic, but:
    -it’s the only southern hub for the United-USAir alliance (key for comprehensive coverage)
    -it’s key to their Caribbean network, which is one of the few areas with little low fare competition. I don’t think the Ft. Lauderdale micro-hub can fill the gap – although they might try.

    The Pittsburgh hub was an easy kill: little O&D traffic, few international routes, and the United partner hubs in Dulles and Chicago could do the same job for loyal east coast USAir fliers. The Charlotte hub, by contrast, fills a pretty large southern gap in the United route network.