Airport Size for a Hub

How large does an airport need to be in order for it to be successfully used as a hub? Right now I’m trying to start out in Nashville (underserved market) and it’s passenger volume is rated at 7. Is this going to be enough volume to build an airline?

short: Yes, but …

long: Not, if you …

It depends on your airline and the competition (also from other airports). Nashville is a good airport to start at.

Airports like Nashville have some benefits over other size-7 airports (e.g., Portland) in that they are situated in the middle of a lot of potential traffic. In the US, there are a few of these that I imagine would all work about as well (e.g., STL, MEM, MCI, PIT, maybe RDU). Going with a size-7 airport as a hub has the added advantage that, generally, the bigger airlines won’t be as eager to build a hub there themselves, so you should have some protection.


There are ways to make it successful if you play your cards right.