Southwest Airlines: Point to Point or hub airline?


This highly unscientific poll will determine if people agree with Southwest Airlines in saying that they are a point to point airline.

See for background on why I have created this pole.



Damiross, FWIW, I agree with you on this. Good luck with the nit-pickers(you know who you are) :unamused:

For the record, I despise SWA…


Damiross…while I appreciate your contributions to this forum…do you really give a sh*$ that much :question: I would think that your hobby of airplane watching while engaging in your other favorite interest would be much more satisfying… 8)


While I enjoy aircraft spotting, I’m even more interested in airline operations. I’ve really reached the point where I don’t care anymore about what certain people say. As I’ve said in the past, if I said the sun rises in the east they would say I’m wrong.

From now on, I’ll say what I know is true and give my opinions on other items.


You forgot the “Who gives a $#|T” option!


Yes…the sun will always rise in the east…and this one just doesn’t seem worth your time…

The money shot at the beginning is good too… :wink:


Point to Point with hubs.
As far as Southwest saying they are point to point, I would agree to a certain extent. Sure, they fly nonstop to 19 cities (as of April 4, 2008) from KSAN. But if I wanted to fly to a destination that wasn’t part of that 19, I would have to stop/change at PHX, LAS, MDW, or BWI. Yes, they do quite a lot of point to point, but the rest of the time, you have to go through one of their hubs.
Take a look…these look kinda like hubs to me.
Southwest activity from:

And by the way, the sun neither rises nor sets. Instead, the earth rotates…etc etc etc.
Sorry damiross…I couldn’t help myself there :smiley:


HAHAHA nice!! :laughing: :laughing:


yeah well put, I think the whole point of the other thread really wasn’t so much hub from a pax standpoint, but traffic, and when you look at the route structure, these are hubs in the respect. IATA has never come up with a 5 destination minimum for a “hub” designation so there really is no set standard, but if you have multiple aircraft flying to multiple destinations you have a hub of some sort on your hands.


Hot dang, we have a winner!!! I have been saying this all along!

A previous post of mine at 2:57 on the thread worthy of repeating addressed to Dami said…

You can’t go system wide as you say above unless you are fortunate enough to live in Baltimore, Houston, Chicago, or Las Vegas, which gee looks like a hub based on the real definition of a hub. Anything outside these four cities, and you pretty much in most cases be visiting one these four cities. Albeit it may be from seat 23A on the layover, but you will be hubbed in and hubbed out accordingly in the true definition of a hub as I posted earlier.

And you are technically correct on your sun example too.



Pretty funny. As of 11:11 eastern today:

Only 26% of respondents chose one of the two point to point answers.

The largest number of people, 42%, chose the answer that it is a mix of point to point and hub and spoke (even though Dami tried to stack the deck against that answer by including that it is a contradiction in terms).

74% chose one of the answers that includes hub and spoke.

The person at Southwest with whom I spoke chose the point to point with hubs answer.

Should we also run a poll about whether any of this will change Dami’s mind, or does everyone believe that he will continue to “know he’s right” no matter what the facts say?


Let me get this straight. ANYTIME a passenger has to change a flight regardless of airline then that point where the passenger changes flights becomes a hub?

My point, which I don’t seem to be able to get through your minds, is that the only reason there are some cities where a Southwest passenger is apt to change planes more often than another city (e.g. MDW versus ABQ) is because there are more flight at that city than the other.

The map at shows only selected cities. For example doesn’t show STL which has over 15 nonstop destinations. Check the map at … p_dyn.html

As I pointed out earlier, you can transfer flights at more than 30 cities in the Southwest network. So, according to people here, Southwest has over 30 hubs.


Does 30 airports equal most flights??? Probably not.

But 5 airports that feed in SWA flights sure come to mind. This already has been brought out.

Since you keep harping on the word “most” from Websters, then 5 give or take airports would be hubs. Again, see previous specific cities that are being mentioned.

If you go by the generic spoke and wheel diddy for a definition of a hub, then yes, you have over 30 hubs.

You choose, it doesn’t matter to me.

Anyway you look at it, the route map from SWA sure doesn’t vary that much from other airlines when it comes to the overall looks with all the arced lines criss crossing the great US of A streaming into a select few hub cities (select = most flights).. Those select cities are hubs by the definition of Websters.

What part of that do you not understand?



Over half of the cities in the Southwest Network (I counted at least 35) allow for connections from one flight to another. I couldn’t find any other airline that would allow connections at any airport in its networks outside of the hubs - an airport where there is a bank of flights departing and arriving within a short period of time and, outside of the banks, there is little activity.

You seem to know so much about it, Allen, so I challenge you to find one other airline that would allow connections throug 51%+ of its airports.


By your question, Dami, seems that even you now have recognized what the majority have been saying for some time, that SWA uses a mix of point to point and hubs. Just because other airlines use more hubs does not change the fact that SWA uses some as well, which was the question at issue here.


Irrelevant. You keep diverting from your incorrect statements.


5 or 35, 5000 or any number you want. Your choice.

What part do you not understand about the definition of hub by Websters standards???



NO NO NO! What I am saying, what I have been trying to get across to you people, is that Southwest is a point to point airline without hubs.

A traditional hub has banks of flights arriving and departing in a short period of time. These flights are scheduled on purpose so that passengers can arrive on the incoming flights and depart on the outgoing flights.

Some Southwest airports have a large number of flights. Because of this, there are naturally opportunities to make connections. This is a BYPRODUCT of the number of flights. Southwest did not purposely plan on, say, 10 flights arriving at MDW within 5 minutes of each other and then having 10 flights leaving within 5 minutes of each other an hour later. That’s not the Southwest way. That is the way of the legacy carriers.

If you don’t believe me, how about believing Bill Owen, Southwest’s Schedule Planning Lead Planner, at … /#comments

“When it comes to route networks, there are two kinds of airlines - Southwest…and everybody else. All of our competitors operate hub-and-spoke networks, meaning that they serve a very small number of airports where they offer a LOT of flights (those are the hubs), and a large number of airports at which they only provide flights to their hubs (the spokes).”

“Southwest’s system isn’t like that at all. Our route network is point-to-point…”

“We do, of course, publish connecting itineraries, as well as direct ones (that have an intermediate stop, but no change of planes). By offering connecting and direct itineraries in our smaller markets, we can offer those Customers our legendary low fares and excellent Customer Service.”


Look: If you don’t believe someone high up in the Southwest Airlines chain of command, I don’t know what to say. I’m accused of supposedly not changing my mind when presented with facts yet when I give facts to back up my statement I’m told I am wrong. What’s wrong with you people? Do you just like to argue for argument’s sake?


Must be ground hog day…

See and my 11/28 2:57 response to the above. We been through this…




Here’s the URL:
The Point of our Route Network

Boy, once you people get an idea in your head, nothing will change it. If I’m given hard cord evidence, I do change my mind. But, I guess I’m not the lead scheduler for Southwest and studying the airline industry for over 30 years doesn’t mean anything.