Delta continues to dismantle their Memphis hub

More cuts are coming to Delta‘s service at Memphis, a hub for Northwest Airlines prior to the merger of the two companies in 2008. Twenty-one flights will be cut as of January 2013, bringing the total number of daily operations below 100. Prior to the merger the two carriers operated a combined 238 average daily flights. The most recent cuts will include terminating service to Jacksonville, Florida and Birmingham, Alabama. Service to Amsterdam, the last long-haul service Delta currently operates from the hub, will also be ending per an announcement last month.

The status of Memphis as a hub for the Atlanta-based carrier is in doubt more now than ever. Delta’s PR staff is still noting the value of the operation to the overall operation, noting that there are still 47 destinations which will be served from Memphis. Still, as the service frequencies are cut and the focus shifts from connecting passengers to local traffic it seems likely that further cuts will happen; there isn’t sufficient local demand to support many of the routes.

The Memphis airport on the whole is seeing reduced service, down to fewer than 200 daily frequencies. The airport authority is working to attract Southwest to the airport, hoping that they will increase their service from the levels currently available via their AirTran subsidiary.

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.


  1. Maybe FedEx will get into passenger service to fill the gap. There is little difference between cattle class and freight these days 😉

  2. Next question, how long before CLE becomes a stub?

    Agreed, MEM will turn into CVG. But at least MEM already has FL service and hopefully WN whereas CVG is the only major OH city without WN/FL service. (CMH, CLE, DAY, CAK)

    I wouldn’t worry about DTW anytime soon. There’s enough local traffic and the region MSA is in the neighborhood of 4 million people compared to CVG of 2M and MEM of 1.3M.

  3. Sounds like the same thing that has happened to STL since the TWA and AA merger. Sorry Memphis.

  4. While Detroit has a lot of population, its economy is shrinking rapidly and few who are there are distance travelers. O+D stats are very weak there.

    Detroit is the only top-50 MSA in the US to have negative population growth over the last 100 years.

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