Best Airline Hubs in the U.S. for Remote Workers
Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This influences which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money.
As more companies hire remote workers, you may be able to do your job from nearly anywhere in the world. Though you could become a digital nomad with no permanent home — working from temporary locations for extended periods of time — it’s more likely that you’ll want a home base. Then, you can choose to travel when the mood strikes.
If you’re looking for a city where you can work from home with easy access to lots of exciting travel destinations, here is our list of some of the best airline hubs for remote workers.
» Learn more: Five great remote work destinations for 2021
Major U.S. airline hubs
Denver has a lot to offer remote workers. It’s one of the sunniest cities in the U.S., boasting 300 days of sunshine per year, and offers access to some of the best slopes in America.
Denver is also one of the best airline hubs for remote workers. Its airport is the 16th busiest in the world for passenger traffic, so residents have access to a wide range of domestic and international flights, including direct flights to the likes of Germany, England, Japan and Costa Rica. Denver's airport is also a major hub for United Airlines.
Denver has a low cost of living compared to many other large U.S. cities. Average monthly expenses are around $2,300 per month, compared to San Francisco’s $4,210 per month and New York’s $3,950. This lower cost of living means you’ll have more funds to use for travel.
If you were surprised to hear that Denver has the 16th busiest airport in the world, you may be shocked to find out that Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport is the busiest in the world. For Atlanta’s remote workers, this has its advantages, including direct flights to South Africa, Brazil, Spain and South Korea. Atlanta also has great domestic travel opportunities, with Miami and New York City both a roughly two-hour flight away. It is also a major hub for Delta Air Lines.
Average monthly expenses for workers living in Atlanta are around $2,140 per month.
Philadelphia International Airport is American Airlines’ second-largest international hub with direct flights to Greece, Croatia, England, Qatar and much of the Caribbean. If you can’t find the flights you’re looking for from Philly’s airport, you can take a roughly 2 1/2 hour train ride to New York-JFK or a three-hour train ride to Dulles International Airport outside of Washington, D.C.
The ease of access to three busy airports alone makes it a natural choice as one of the best airline hubs for remote workers.
If you’re considering moving to the City of Brotherly Love, you can look forward to a relatively low cost of living, with average monthly expenses coming out to about $2,290 per month.
The Wall Street Journal recently named Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport the friendliest large airport in the United States, looking at factors such as customer satisfaction, taxi-to-takeoff time, restaurants and Wi-Fi. Phoenix Sky Harbor serves as a hub for American Airlines, and you can find direct flights from the airport to Germany, Costa Rica, England and various locations in Mexico.
If you prefer driving to flying, Phoenix is a great base for road trips. You can drive to Las Vegas, Joshua Tree National Park, San Diego or the Grand Canyon in anywhere from three to five hours.
Phoenix has the lowest cost of living on our list, with average monthly expenses coming in at around $1,890 per month. No wonder it’s such a great place to work from home.
Houston has two main airports, the George Bush Intercontinental Airport and the William P. Hobby Airport. United uses the George Bush Intercontinental Airport as one of its airline hubs and calls it United’s “gateway to Latin America,” with nonstop service to Argentina, Chile, Colombia and Peru.
If you’re looking beyond Latin America, you’ll find nonstop service to New Zealand, France, Japan and Australia. Average monthly expenses in Houston come in at around $1,920 per month, and there’s no state income tax.
Miami: If you desire access to the Caribbean and Latin America, it’s hard to compete with being based in Miami. You can fly to the Bahamas in less than an hour and Cancun in less than two hours.
Los Angeles: Though the higher cost of living kept Los Angeles off our list, if your budget allows it, Los Angeles is an excellent travel base with United, Delta, Alaska and American Airlines all having hubs at the Los Angeles International Airport.
Chicago: Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport is the sixth busiest in the world, serving as an airline hub for both American Airlines and United. It offers a wide range of direct flights to satisfy any remote worker’s wanderlust, including to Hungary, Germany, Hong Kong, Israel and Maui.
The bottom line
If you work from home, you can probably work from anywhere you travel, too. When deciding between popular airline hubs for remote workers, take into account both cost of living and direct travel possibilities, with particular emphasis on routes to destinations you enjoy (or plan on) traveling to.
How to maximize your rewards
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2023, including those best for:
Flexibility, point transfers and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
No annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
Flat-rate travel rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Bonus travel rewards and high-end perks: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express
Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card