A route table in AWS, defines how incoming traffic is handled within the virtual private cloud (VPC). It contains a set of routing rules, which specify where network traffic is directed. It allows administrators to control the flow of network traffic within their virtual networks, by specifying which subnets are connected to each other, and how they communicate with each other. Route tables can be used to configure static routes or dynamic routing protocols such as BGP or OSPF for more complex scenarios. Additionally, they can be used to direct Internet-bound requests from internal applications out into the public internet via an Internet gateway, or through a Virtual Private Network (VPN) connection.