Airline merger could squeeze some hub airports

American and U.S. Air to merge

Published On: Feb 15 2013 11:11:39 AM EST
CHICAGO -

A merged American Airlines and US Airways will carry more passengers around the world than any other, but even the biggest airline flying doesn't need eight hub airports on the ground.

That means amid all the buzz over the merger announcement, there are a few mayors and lots of frequent flyers worried about what's to come. Some cities are already angling to be sure their airports hang on to coveted hub status and the economic boost that comes with it.

US Airways CEO Doug Parker says the combined airline will keep all eight hubs. But aviation experts like Robert Poole, of the Reason Foundation, believe that's just not sustainable because the hub network as it currently stands is too complex and doesn't meet enough of the travel needs.