American Airlines Is Adding 14 New Destinations From Austin, Quadrupling Its Reach In A Year

For years Austin has been one of the fastest-growing aviation markets in the country, tracking the city’s growth more generally. This growth has continued – Austin isn’t just UT Austin and Dell Computers, it’s Google, Facebook, Apple, and Tesla now. It’s Oracle, Facebook, Indeed, Amazon, VRBO and eBay.

Before the pandemic American Airlines was looking at marginal adds of non-hub routes in Austin – Boston, San Jose, and weekend Cabo service – to augment its flights to hubs.

However with the rise of leisure travel and a need to find spots to fly with business travel still grounded they aggressively announced 10 new destinations from Austin in March. The flights they’ve added are doing well, and Austin is quickly turning into a connecting hub for the airline almost by accident.

Now American is doubling down on Austin announcing an additional 14 new destinations. With this announcement they are growing from 20 destinations to 34 destinations. They are also adding frequencies to some of their existing destinations.  Two years ago American Airlines was only flying to its hubs from Austin.

Here are American’s 14 new destinations from Austin:

Destination  Frequency Start Date Aircraft
Cincinnati 2x Daily Sept. 8 Embraer 175 (Envoy)
El Paso 3x Daily Sept. 8, Oct. 7 and Nov. 2 Embraer 175 (Envoy)
Indianapolis 2x Daily Sept. 8 and Oct. 7 Embraer 175 (Republic)
Jacksonville 1x Daily Sept. 8 Embraer 175 (Envoy)
Kansas City 2x Daily Sept. 8 and Nov. 2 Embraer 175 (Envoy)
Oklahoma City 1x Daily Oct. 7 Embraer 175 (Envoy)
Reno 1x Daily Sept. 8 Embraer 175 (Envoy)
St. Louis 2x Daily Sept. 8 and Oct. 7 Embraer 175 (Envoy)
Tulsa 1x Daily Nov. 2 Embraer 175 (Envoy)
Cancun M/W/Fri/Sun Oct. 7 Boeing 737
Liberia, Costa Rica Tu/Th/Sat Nov. 2 Boeing 737
Punta Cana M/W/Fri/Sun Nov. 2 Boeing 737
Puerta Vallarta Tu/Th/Sat Nov. 2 Boeing 737
San Juan 1x Daily Oct. 7 Boeing 737

This is on top of existing service to Boston, Charlotte, Dallas Fort-Worth, New York JFK, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Orlando, Miami, Nassau, Chicago O’Hare, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Cabo, Tampa, Aspen, Nashville, Fort Walton Beach and New Orleans.  And American is already adding Raleigh and Washington Dulles service later this summer, too.

Summer seasonal service going year-round:

Destination Frequency Start Date Aircraft
Nassau M/W/Fri/Sun Nov. 2 Boeing 737
San Jose del Cabo Tu/Th/Sat Oct. 7 Boeing 737

Additional flights being added to current routes:

Destination  Addl’l Frequencies Start Date
Dallas – Fort Worth 2x Daily Nov. 2
Orlando 1x Daily Oct. 7
Miami 2x Daily October 7 and November 2
New Orleans 1x Daily Oct. 7
Tampa 1x Daily Nov. 2

The additional Austin – Tampa flight is accompanied by further growth in Tampa as well: Nashville and Raleigh, twice daily each, beginning November 2 and daily LAX service starting October 7.

In American’s press release on the new service, Austin Mayor Steven Adler says “We couldn’t be happier with today’s announcement of new and expanded service in AUS.” Of special note to Adler, presumably, is the international frequencies – since over the Thanksgiving holidays Adler urged Austin residents to stay home – from his timeshare in Cabo.

With these new routes that will load for sale over the coming weekend, American Airlines will still be the second largest carrier behind Southwest, which is scheduled to operate 4052 flights in September (according to data from Cirium Diio Mi) with nothing smaller than a Boeing 737-700. However they’re really closing the gap.

These new flights, as much as any promotion, will make it easy for me to retain my elite status as an Austin resident. Next up we need American to move forward on the long-planned expansion of the much-too-small Admirals Club into adjacent vacated TSA offices.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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Comments

  1. Wow!

    So, what’s your next move, Ed Bastian, for Delta:

    – fight AA by also increasing frequencies of flights to cities already served & adding flights to new cities at this “focus city”?

    – or –

    – flight (abandoning previously announced intention to make AUS a DL “focus city”) in the face of dominance by the two (2) larger rivals, AA & WN, respectively – plus increased service by the ULCC carriers?

    Tick tock. Tick tock.

  2. It is pretty clear that American is in a full-out and foolish attempt to take share from low cost and ultra low cost carriers in their strength markets and vice versa. With the highest unit costs, this can’t possibly end well, esp. since the low cost and ultra low cost carriers are targeting AA’s hub markets.
    DL’s best strategy is to continue to defend its own hub markets and maintain its service to its developmental markets like AUS where it is the 3rd largest carrier based on ASMs and has moved from 13 to 16% capacity share compared to 2 years ago.

  3. Response to Howard – How about making San Antonio DL’s focus city? Seventh largest city in the U.S. with poor service on all airlines currently.

  4. Meanwhile down the road in SAT, we are stuck in the 90s with the ninth highest airfares in the country and hardly any service outside of the hubs. I wish the traffic wasn’t so bad on I-35, I would fly out of AUS more.

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