American Airlines Adds New Flights To Its Austin ‘Hub In All But The Name’

American Airlines has added three seasonal routes from Austin for a two and a half week period, and it’s not even South By Southwest. From December 16, 2021 – January 3, 2022 American will offer flights,

  • Austin – Fort Myers (a route Southwest flies)
  • Austin – Denver (served by Southwest, United and Frontier)
  • Austin – Aspen (returning seasonal route)

The airline’s December schedule currently shows 35 separate destinations, according to data from Cirum Diio Mi.

In total, American is scheduled to offer 2340 flights and 327,754 seats totaling 292,893,855 seat miles from Austin during the month of December.

This still leaves the airline in distant second place at the airport, with Southwest scheduling 5309 flights, 753,687 seats and 808,591,181 seat miles. In fact, Southwest’s presence is so big it offers nearly twice the seat miles from Austin in its December schedule as American, Alaska, JetBlue and British Airways combined.

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 which at the time were only to the airline’s 8 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. Then in June American doubled down on Austin announcing an additional 14 new destinations. And Austin is quickly turning into a connecting hub for the airline almost by accident.

These additional routes are almost a footnote in Austin’s service now, but it’s interesting to see both more growth, American’s strategy of adding temporary flights, and willingness to do even more with Austin.

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, 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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  1. Our airport is too crowded!
    And why didn’t they put it in Manor closer to my house!!??
    Seriously, I miss the incoming flights at the old Mueller Airport.
    I used to wave to the pilots…..

  2. @ Gary — The sad thing is that, like San Francisco, Austin has been “ruined”. It used to be an awesome city, now it is fairly unpleasant to visit.

  3. It’s pleasant if you’re white and have money. Even doctors here treat people of color like thugs trying to score instead of patients with serious health issues. I’ve been here 40 years and I’ve never seen a city more divided. Oh, and POC’s, don’t come here. The Po Po got your number…..

  4. We just flew AA to AUS from MCO and the flight was great. Austin airport has grown by leaps and bounds, once everything reopens.

  5. This sure would be a far quieter blog if not for every second post (or more) being about American Airlines some days.

  6. Airlines never talk about where they are cutting flights but that is just as, if not more important so than where they add them.
    AA’s top 3 cities for the greatest capacity reductions for the fall and beyond are in Philadelphia, Chicago and Los Angeles; low cost and ultra low cost carriers are growing in most of AA”s hubs while Delta has become the largest airline in Los Angeles, displacing American.
    Sure, Austin is a fast-growing market but it doesn’t have the strategic significance of New York, Chicago and LA, backbones of AA’s historic route system but cities where its shrinkage has been going on for years and is only accelerating.

  7. The idea of a “hub” implies there are spokes and connections. Is Austin actually becoming a hub with flights aligned for people to connect logically to lots of others, or is it more a case of adding more point to point destinations? I can’t recall ever seeing an option on American connecting through Austin, but maybe it’s because of the city pairs I’ve searched.

  8. Echoing Roberto, what happened to non-stops to SJC? All the techies here in Austin can’t fly AA non-stop back to the Mothership.

  9. Austin may have all this stuff but it’s still in Texas where recent legislation- anti abortion, restrictive voting rights- make it a place and state is never consider living in. It may be “cheaper” but people pay for it in other, more dear ways. I’ll stay away.

  10. The interesting one here is RSW, where I used to fly in and out of quite a lot (work), because I have no idea on God’s little green earth why anyone would want to go from Austin to Ft Myers.

  11. @Jason – you are so right. I’ve lived in Texas my entire life and it’s getting really, really bad here. Can’t wait to escape all the hypocritical repubs that are ruining this state!!

  12. @CS and @Jason, truth. Freedom and rights are all well and good if its related to guns and no masks but lord help you if you are a woman or anyone who believes in science. Sigh. Raising a kid here is tough but I am going to stay and try to balance things out from within.

    @Woofie, POC = person of color (in case you were asking seriously)

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