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Category Archives: United Express

SkyWest Airlines to drop Chico, California on December 2

SkyWest Airlines (United Express) (St. George, UT) will drop Chico, California and the Chico-San Francisco route on December 2. The route is not profitable according to KRCR News. This will end commercial air service at the airport.

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Mark Durbin/AirlinersGallery.com. Embraer EMB-120ER Brasilia N295SW (msn 120322) taxies at the San Francisco hub.

United Express-SkyWest Airlines: AG Slide Show

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United Airlines to start San Francisco-Montrose, Colorado flights

United Airlines (Chicago) will start twice-weekly United Express service, operated by SkyWest Airlines (St. George, UT) CRJ700s, between its San Francisco hub and Montrose, CO on December 20 per Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N763SK (msn 10228) of SkyWest Airlines departs from Los Angeles.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

United Express-SkyWest: AG Slide Show

United to drop the Chicago O’Hare-Topeka route on September 3

United Airlines (Chicago) is ending United Express service from Topeka, Kansas to the Chicago (O’Hare) hub on September 3 according to Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Embraer ERJ 145XR (EMB-145XR) N18101 (msn 145590) arrives at the Chicago O’Hare hub.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

United Express/ExpressJet: AG Slide Show

United to operate seasonal Washington Dulles-Los Cabos weekly flights, will launch two new Express routes from Newark

United Airlines (Chicago) will launch a weekly and seasonal route from the Washington (Dulles) hub to Los Cabos (Baja), Mexico from December 20 through May 2, 2015. The route will be operated on Saturdays with Boeing 737-700 aircraft per Airline Route.

The company is also starting two new daily United Express routes from the Newark hub starting on October 26; to London, Ontario and South Bend, Indiana. Both routes will be operated with Embraer ERJ 145 regional jets.

Copyright Photo: Mark Durbin/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-724 N14731 (msn 28799) taxies at the San Francisco hub.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

United expands Embraer 175 operations

United Express ERJ 175s (United)(LRW)

United Airlines (Chicago) will add additional Embraer 175 flights from the San Francisco hub in the fall. In addition to the previously-reported routes, United will add United Express service from SFO with the new E175 flights to Boise (starting on September 30), Calgary (September 21), Dallas/Fort Worth (October 26), Kansas City (October 26), St. Louis (September 20) and Salt Lake City (October 26) per Airline Route.

The SFO flights are expected to be operated by SkyWest Airlines.

SkyWest Airlines operated its E175 inaugural flight, operating as United Express, from Chicago O’Hare to Reagan National Airport in Washington, D.C. on Saturday, May 17. According to SkyWest, “the milestone represented a tremendous amount of preparation and hard work by many SkyWest employees during the last 15 months.”

Within the next two years, SkyWest will take delivery of 40 new E175s that will operate under an agreement with United Airlines.

According to the airline, “the E175 is the fifth aircraft type in SkyWest’s current fleet, and from full-sized cargo-bins to larger aisles and seats, it’s filled with enhanced features that will help ensure every passenger enjoys a comfortable, convenient flight.”

From Houston, E175 service on flights between the hub at George Bush Intercontinental Airport and Atlanta and New Orleans begins on June 15, and between Houston and Austin starting on June 16. United also launched E175 service between Chicago O’Hare and Minneapolis/St. Paul on June 5; between Chicago O’Hare and Atlanta beginning on June 15; and between Chicago O’Hare and New York LaGuardia beginning on June 23.

United Express carrier Mesa Airlines will operate the flights between Houston and Atlanta, Austin and New Orleans. United Express carrier SkyWest Airlines will operate the flights between Chicago and Atlanta, New York LaGuardia and Minneapolis/St. Paul.

Copyright Photo: United Airlines.

 

 

United to end its regional routes to Las Vegas on September 2

United Airlines (Chicago) will end its Embraer EMB-120 Brasilia regional routes to Las Vegas on September 2 per Airline Route. SkyWest Airlines (St. George) currently operates its United Express Brasilias to both Fresno and Palm Springs from LAS.

Additionally United is starting nonstop United Express Bombardier CRJ200 regional jet service from its San Francisco hub to Kelowna, British Columbia on September 20.

Copyright Photo: Eddie Maloney/AirlinersGallery.com. SkyWest’s EMB-120ER Brasilia N568SW (msn 120343) lands at LAS.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

United Express-SkyWest: AG Slide Show

United to drop United Express service from Portland, Oregon to Eugene, Redmond and Seattle/Tacoma

United Airlines (Chicago) has decided to drop its United Express flights from Portland, Oregon to Eugene, Redmond and Seattle/Tacoma on September 1 according to Oregon Live. The flights are operated by SkyWest Airlines Embraer EMB-120ER Brasilias.

Read the full story from Oregon Live: CLICK HERE

In addition, United is dropping service to Doha, Qatar on August 30 as an extension of the daily Washington (Dulles)-Dubai route according to Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum/AirlinersGallery.com. SkyWest Airlines EMB-120ER Brasilia N584SW (msn 120352) taxies across the ramp at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA).

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

United Express-SkyWest: AG Slide Show

United Airlines and SkyWest Airlines introduce the Embraer 175

United Express ERJ 175 PR-EFC (CO 91)(Flt)(Embraer-United)(LRW)

United Airlines (Chicago) has introduced the Embraer 175 aircraft to the United Express fleet, with service on the regional jet operating between Chicago (O’Hare) and the top business markets of Washington (Reagan National) and Boston (Logan).

United Express carrier SkyWest Airlines (St. George, Utah) began Boston service today (May 19). Service between Chicago (O’Hare) and Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport began on Saturday (May 17). The E175 flights complement existing United service in those markets.

The 76-seat E175 regional jet is the newest addition to the United Express fleet, enabling the airline to offer an improved regional jet experience. With 12 seats in United First, 16 seats in United Economy Plus and 48 seats in United Economy, the E175 offers more personal space for customers, with wider seats and aisles than other regional aircraft. Each United First seat features a power outlet. The aircraft’s large overhead bins can accommodate standard-sized carry-on bags, resulting in more convenience for customers.

United will offer E175 in several additional markets beginning in June, complementing existing United services:

Chicago O’Hare-Minneapolis /St. Paul, beginning June 5
Chicago O’Hare-Atlanta, beginning June 15
Houston Bush Intercontinental-Atlanta, beginning June 15
Houston Bush Intercontinental-New Orleans, beginning June 15
Chicago O’Hare-New York LaGuardia, beginning June 23
San Francisco-St. Louis, beginning September 20
San Francisco-Austin, beginning October 26
San Francisco-Dallas/Fort Worth, beginning October 26
San Francisco-Minneapolis/ St. Paul, beginning October 26

SkyWest Airlines will operate the services to and from Chicago O’Hare International Airport and to and from San Francisco International Airport. Mesa Airlines will operate the flights to and from Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport.

United expects to introduce 70 E175 aircraft into the United Express fleet by the end of 2015. As United inducts new aircraft into the fleet, the airline will remove smaller, less efficient regional aircraft from the fleet. The E175s consume less fuel per seat and have fewer CO2 emissions per seat than the aircraft they replace.

Copyright Photo: United Airlines.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

United Express-SkyWest Airlines: AG Slide Show

United to connect the oil patch of Williston, North Dakota to Houston starting on August 19

United Airlines (Chicago) will start nonstop United Express service from its Houston (Bush Intercontinental) to the oil patch area at Williston in the western part of North Dakota starting on August 19. The new route will be operated by ExpressJet Airlines (Atlanta) and was announced by Senator John Hoeven of North Dakota. ExpressJet already flies the Williston-Denver route for United Airlines (see the map below).

Read the full report from The Republic: CLICK HERE

Additionally, United will also commence nonstop United Express service from its Denver hub to Lafayette, Indiana also starting on August 19 per Airline Route.

The carrier will start daily nonstop Houston (Bush Intercontinental)-Hartford/Springfield Embraer 175 flights starting on October 15.

Copyright Photo: Jay Selman/AirlinersGallery.com. United Express Embraer ERJ 145LR (EMB-145LR) N16559 (msn 145603) operated by ExpressJet Airlines prepares to land in Charlotte.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

United Express-ExpressJet: AG Slide Show

United Express-ExpressJet Route Map:

United Express-ExpressJet 5.2014 Route Map

 

SkyWest Airlines to operate United Express flights from the Denver hub to Hays, Kansas starting on August 1

 

SkyWest Airlines (United Express) (St. George, Utah) will start a new route for United Airlines. The first United Express flight, operated by SkyWest Airlines, from Hays, Kansas to Denver is scheduled to take off beginning on August 1, 2014.

The Hays flights will operate using 50-seat Bombardier-manufactured CRJ200 regional jet aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. SkyWest’s Bombardier CRJ200 (CL-600-2B19) N930SW (msn 7713) operating in United Express colors arrives in Los Angeles.

SkyWest Airlines: AG Slide Show

SkyWest Route Map:

SkyWest 4.2014 Route Map

 

 

United releases schedules for four additional Embraer 175 routes

United Express-SkyWest ERJ 175 PR-EED (CO 91)(Grd) SJK (Embraer)(LR)

United Airlines (Chicago) has released additional new Embraer 175 United Express routes and schedules as reported by Airline Route. This is in addition to the other previously released E175 schedules.

From Chicago (O’Hare) hub to:

Austin, Texas (effective July 1)

From Houston (Bush Intercontinental) hub to:

Toronto (Pearson) (July 15)

Calgary (August 19)

From the San Francisco hub to:

St. Louis (September 20)

The new type will be introduced from the Chicago (O’Hare) hub to Washington (Reagan National) starting on May 17.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

 

United to start nonstop Houston-Boise service starting on August 19

United Airlines (Chicago) will introduced a new daily Bombardier CRJ700 route from the Houston (Bush Intercontinental) hub and Boise, Idaho starting on August 19 per Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/Airlinersgallery.com. Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N765SK (msn 10231) of SkyWest Airlines climbs away from Los Angeles International Airport.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

United Express-SkyWest: AG Slide Show

 

 

United Airlines to end all service to Klamath Falls and Modesto in June

United Airlines (Chicago) will end United Express Embraer EMB-120 Brasilia service to Klamath Falls, Oregon (from Portland and San Francisco) on June 3 per Airline Route. Service to Modesto, California from San Francisco will end on June 4. The routes are operated by SkyWest Airlines (St. George, Utah).

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Embraer EMB-120ER Brasilia N233SW (msn 120307) arrives in Los Angeles.

United Express-SkyWest: AG Slide Show

Current SkyWest (United Express) routes on the West Coast:

United Express-SkyWest WC 4.2014 Route Map

 

United to start daily Newark-Binghamton service on June 6

United logo-1

United Airlines (Chicago) will start daily United Express service between the Newark hub and Binghamton starting on June 6 with Bombardier DHC-8-200 service.

Read the full report from Pressconnects.com: CLICK HERE

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

Embraer delivers the first Embraer E175 to SkyWest Airlines

United Express-SkyWest ERJ 175 PR-EED (CO 91)(Grd) SJK (Embraer)(LR)

Embraer (São José dos Campos) yesterday (March 27) delivered, in a ceremony held at the Company’s headquarters, in São José dos Campos, the first dual-class 76-seat Embraer 175 (ERJ 175) to SkyWest Inc. (SkyWest Airlines) (St. George, Utah). The aircraft is part of the firm order signed by the airline last year, for 40 E175 aircraft. SkyWest Airlines will operate the aircraft as an United Express carrier for United Airlines. The E175s are configured in a dual-class 76-seat layout.

An additional 60 orders are reconfirmable, subject to SkyWest being awarded Capacity Purchase Agreement (CPA) contracts with major U.S. airline partners. The agreement between SkyWest and Embraer also includes options for another 100 E175s, taking the potential total order up to 200 airplanes.

In a separate deal with Embraer, SkyWest became the launch customer of the E175-E2, ordering 100 aircraft with 100 additional options, for deliveries beginning in 2020.

SkyWest is the largest regional airline group in the world and is the parent company of SkyWest Airlines and ExpressJet Airlines. Both companies have long histories with Embraer and were early customers for the Embraer EMB 120 Brasilia turboprop aircraft. More than 40 EMB 120 Brasilia aircraft currently fly in the SkyWest Airlines network, primarily in the western United States. ExpressJet Airlines operates 251 aircraft of the ERJ 145 family and is the largest ERJ operator in the world.

The new type is due to enter revenue service on May 17, 2014 on the Chicago (O’Hare)-Washington (Reagan National) route.

Copyright Photo: Embraer.

United Express-SkyWest: AG Slide Show

Routes operated as United Express:

United Express-SkyWest 3.2014 Route Map

 

CommutAir to shift its fleet to Newark and Washington Dulles

CommutAir (United Express) (Cleveland) as expected, will shift most of its fleet to United Airlines’ Newark and Washington (Dulles) hubs as United phases down the CLE hub according to Flightglobal.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Bombardier DHC-8-311 (Q300) N876CA (msn 438) of CommutAir arrives at Washington’s Dulles International Airport hub (IAD).

United Express-CommutAir: AG Slide Show

Current Route Map:

United Express-CommutAir 3.2014 Route Map

SkyWest Airlines to add two new United Express destinations in North Dakota

SkyWest Airlines (St. George, Utah) has announced new United Express jet service from Jamestown and Devils Lake Regional Airports to the Denver hub.

Beginning June 5, 2014, there will be 11 roundtrip flights each week from both Jamestown and Devils Lake to Denver, including both nonstop and one-stop trips. Every flight is timed to provide extensive connection opportunities on hundreds of daily United Airlines flights in Denver.

The new service from Jamestown and Devils Lake will be operated with 50-passenger Bombardier-manufactured Canadair Regional Jet 200s (CRJ200s).

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. SkyWest’s Bombardier CRJ200 (CL-600-2B19) N973SW (msn 7949) climbs away from the runway at Los Angeles International Airport.

United Express-SkyWest: AG Slide Show

Routes operated as United Express:

United Express-SkyWest 3.2014 Route Map

United Airlines announces additional Embraer 175 routes

United Express ERJ 175 (CO 91)(Flt)(United)(LRW)

United Airlines (Chicago) has announced that it will launch service with the airline’s new Embraer 175 aircraft on flights between United’s Houston hub at George Bush Intercontinental Airport and Atlanta and New Orleans beginning on June 15, and between Houston and Austin beginning on June 16. United also announced ERJ 175 service between Chicago O’Hare and Minneapolis/St. Paul beginning on June 5; between Chicago O’Hare and Atlanta beginning on June 15; and between Chicago O’Hare and New York LaGuardia beginning on June 23.

The 76-seat ERJ 175 regional jet is the newest addition to the United Express fleet. The aircraft features 12 seats in United First, 16 seats in United Economy Plus and 48 seats in United Economy. United Express carrier Mesa Airlines (Phoenix) will operate the flights between Houston and Atlanta, Austin and New Orleans. United Express carrier SkyWest Airlines (St. George, Utah) will operate the flights between Chicago O’Hare and Atlanta, New York LaGuardia and Minneapolis/St. Paul.

Last month, United announced that SkyWest Airlines will operate ERJ 175 service between Chicago O’Hare and Reagan Washington National beginning on May 17 and between Chicago O’Hare and Boston Logan beginning on May 19.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

United Airlines to introduce the Embraer 175 on May 17

United Express ERJ 175 (CO 91)(Flt)(United)(LRW)

United Airlines (Chicago) will introduce the first Embraer 175 (ERJ 175) on two routes from its Chicago O’Hare hub in May.

United Express ERJ 175 inaugural flight will be launched on May 17 between Chicago (O’Hare) and Washington (Reagan National). Two days later, the new type will be introduced between Chicago (O’Hare) and Boston according to USA Today.

SkyWest, Inc. announced in May 2013 it had entered into a Capacity Purchase Agreement (CPA) with United Airlines, Inc. to operate 40 new Embraer 175 (ERJ 175) dual-class regional jet aircraft.  The CPA with United has a term of 12 years and SkyWest will operate under terms and conditions similar to its existing agreements with United.

SkyWest has determined that these 40 regional jet aircraft will be operated by SkyWest Airlines, Inc. (St. George), a wholly-owned subsidiary of SkyWest. Under the agreement, it is anticipated that the 40 aircraft will be introduced into service in the second quarter of 2014, with deliveries continuing to mid-2015.  The aircraft will be configured with 76-seats in dual-class.

SkyWest, Inc. also announced it has entered into an agreement with Embraer for the purchase of 100 new Embraer 175 dual-class regional jet aircraft. Of the 100 aircraft, 40 are considered firm deliveries and the remaining 60 aircraft are considered conditional until SkyWest enters into capacity purchase agreements with other major airlines to operate the aircraft.  Deliveries for the 40 firm aircraft are anticipated to begin in the second quarter of 2014 and continue through mid 2015. The aircraft will be configured in 76 seats in dual-class. The agreement also includes options for an additional 100 ERJ 175 aircraft and would be valued at $8.3 billion if all 200 aircraft are ordered.  The initial 40 firm aircraft outlined above will be operated by SkyWest Airlines, Inc.

Previously in April 2013 United Airlines announced an agreement to add 30 Embraer ERJ 175 regional jets to the United Express fleet. Under an agreement with Embraer, United will purchase the aircraft with deliveries in 2014 and 2015.

United also secured options for 40 additional aircraft.

The Embraer ERJ 175 is the first 76-seat regional jet aircraft in the United Express fleet. The aircraft will be configured with 12 United First, 16 Economy Plus and 48 United Economy seats. The design of the aircraft will result in more personal space for customers with wider seats and aisles than those on the 50-seat aircraft. The aircraft can accommodate standard carry-on bags, resulting in more convenience for customers.

As United inducts the new aircraft into the United Express fleet, the company will remove some of the older 50-seat regional jets in the fleet. The E175s will consume 10 percent less fuel per seat and will have less CO2 emissions per seat than the 50-seat aircraft they replace.

Image: United Airlines.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

United Express-SkyWest: AG Slide Show

United Airlines to add four new Express routes from Chicago O’Hare

United Airlines (Chicago) in June will add four new United Express routes from the Chicago (O’Hare) hub per Airline Route. Daily Chicago-Bangor flights will be added on June 5 as an United Express (CRJ700) route along with Chicago-Erie (ERJ 145) and Chicago-Flint (ERJ 145) on the same day.

Finally on June 22, United Express service will be added to Cody, Wyoming with a weekly flight (CRJ700).

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N744SK (msn 10200) of SkyWest Airlines climbs away from Los Angeles International Airport.

United Airlines (current): AG Slide Show

United Express-SkyWest Airlines: AG Slide Show

 

United Express service is coming to Atlantic City, New Jersey

United Airlines (Chicago) today announced the airline will inaugurate service at Atlantic City International Airport, offering customers daily nonstop flights to United’s hubs at Chicago O’Hare International Airport and Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport beginning on April 1, 2014..

From Chicago, United’s flight to Atlantic City will depart at 8:10 a.m. (0810) daily, arriving at 11:17 a.m. (1117). The return flight will depart Atlantic City at 11:52 a.m. (1152) and arrive in Chicago at 1:10 p.m. (1310).

From Houston, United’s flight to Atlantic City will depart at 7 p.m. (1900) daily, arriving at 11:20 p.m. (2320). The return flight will depart Atlantic City at 6 a.m. (0600) and arrive in Houston at 8:49 a.m. (0849).

United Express carrier ExpressJet Airlines (Atlanta) will operate the Atlantic City flights with 50-seat Embraer ERJ 145 aircraft.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. ExpressJet Airlines’ Embraer ERJ 145XR (EMB-145XR) N12136 (msn 145719) arrives at the Chicago O’Hare hub.

United Airlines: AG Slide Show

United Express-ExpressJet: AG Slide Show

 

SkyWest announces quarterly income of $26.4 million

SkyWest, Inc. (St. George, Utah)  today reported net income of $26.4 million, or $0.50 per diluted share, for the quarter ended September 30, 2013, compared to net income  of  $20.9 million, or $0.40 per diluted share, for the same period last year.

SkyWest also reported net income of $50.3 million, or $0.96 per diluted share, for the nine months ended September 30, 2013, compared to $37.2 million, or $0.72 per diluted share, for the same period last year.

Quarter Highlights

SkyWest experienced improved financial results for the quarter ended September 30, 2013, compared to its financial results for the quarter ended September 30, 2012.  SkyWest generated increased operating revenues (after giving effect to reduced fuel, certain engine overhaul and landing fee pass through amounts) primarily due to additional block hour production from increased aircraft utilization, larger fleet size and rate escalations in SkyWest contracts with its major airline partners.  Following are selected highlights from SkyWest’s quarter ended September 30, 2013, compared to the quarter ended September 30, 2012:

  • Increased pretax income 34.8% to $44.4 million, compared to $32.9 million
  • Increased fully-diluted EPS 25.0% to $0.50, compared to $0.40
  • Increased block hour production 2.8% to 613,821 block hours, compared to 596,901 block hours
  • Increased operating revenues by approximately $32.9 million (net of fuel, certain engine overhaul and landing fee pass through revenues), primarily related to rate escalations under SkyWest’s agreements with its major partners and increased block hour production
  • Made cash payments of $22.9 million consisting of $11.5 million for the repurchase of 800,000 shares of treasury stock and $11.4 million for deposits on new aircraft
  • Increased total aircraft fleet to 756 aircraft as of September 30, 2013, compared to 739 aircraft as of September 30, 2012

Commenting on the results, Jerry C. Atkin, SkyWest’s Chairman and CEO, said “We are pleased with the improved financial performance for the current quarter. However, in spite of current challenges we remain committed to further improvement in meeting our current and long-term operational and financial objectives.”

Financial and Operating Results

Operating revenues totaled $850.7 million for the quarter ended September 30, 2013, compared to $865.3 million for the same period last year or a decrease of $14.6 million.  The decrease was due primarily to the reduction of approximately $47.5 million in fuel, certain engine overhaul amounts and landing fees which were directly reimbursed by SkyWest’s major partners and recorded as operating revenues.  However, this reduction was mostly offset by recording approximately $32.9 million in additional operating revenues, primarily resulting from rate escalations under SkyWest’s agreements with its major partners and a 2.8% increase in total block hours for the quarter ended September 30, 2013, compared to the quarter ended September 30, 2012.

Total airline expenses (consisting of total operating and interest expenses) decreased $18.2 million, or 2.2%, during the quarter ended September 30, 2013, compared to the same period in 2012.  However, after excluding pass-through costs for fuel, certain engine overhaul expenses and landing fees, total airline expenses increased $29.3 million.

Under certain of its agreements with its major partners, SkyWest recognizes revenue at fixed hourly rates for mature engine maintenance on regional jet engines and SkyWest recognizes engine maintenance expense on its CRJ200 regional jet engines on an as-incurred basis as maintenance expense.  During the quarter ended September 30, 2013, CRJ200 engine expense under these agreements decreased $4.0 million to $9.1 million, compared to $13.1 million for the quarter ended September 30, 2012, primarily as a result of decreased engine overhaul expense due to the timing of scheduled engine maintenance events.  SkyWest was reimbursed approximately $12.8 million and $10.4 million for engine overhaul expense, under its agreements with its major partners, during the quarters ended September 30, 2013 and 2012, respectively.

Liquidity

At September 30, 2013, SkyWest had $727.8 million in cash and marketable securities, compared to $709.4 million as of December 31, 2012.  The increase in cash and marketable securities of $18.4 million was primarily the result of increased profitability.  Cash and marketable securities increased $62.2 million during the quarter ended September 30, 2013 compared to a balance of $665.6 as of June 30, 2013.  SkyWest’s long-term debt was $1.35 billion as of September 30, 2013, compared to $1.47 billion as of December 31, 2012.  The decrease in long-term debt for the nine-months ended September 30, 2013 was due primarily to SkyWest’s payment of normal recurring debt obligations.  SkyWest has significant long-term lease obligations that are recorded as operating leases and are not reflected as liabilities on SkyWest’s consolidated balance sheets.  At a 4.7% discount rate, the present value of these lease obligations was approximately $1.6 billion as of September 30, 2013.

Recent Business Developments

On August 2, 2012, SkyWest announced the award of 34 additional dual-class aircraft and the removal of 66 CRJ200 aircraft under its Delta Connection Agreements with Delta Airlines, Inc.  As of May 2013, all 34 of these additional dual-class aircraft had been delivered. As of September 30, 2013 SkyWest had removed 30 (22 placed in contract with another partner; other 8 removed from fleet) of the 66 CRJ200 aircraft from service and currently anticipates removing another 18 CRJ200 aircraft between October 2013 and December 2013.  SkyWest believes the remaining 18 CRJ200 aircraft will be removed at various times through 2014 and early 2015.  Additionally, 41 of the 66 aircraft have been financed by Delta and will be returned to Delta with no further obligation by SkyWest.

On May 21, 2013, SkyWest announced it had entered into a Capacity Purchase Agreement (CPA) with United Airlines, Inc. to operate 40 new Embraer ERJ 175 dual-class regional jet aircraft. The CPA is for 12 years and the new aircraft will be operated by SkyWest’s wholly-owned subsidiary, SkyWest Airlines, Inc. (United Express). Deliveries for these aircraft are scheduled to begin in March 2014 and continue through August 2015.

Additionally, on May 21, 2013 SkyWest announced it reached an agreement with Embraer S.A. for the purchase of 100 new ERJ 175 dual-class regional jet aircraft, 40 of which are considered firm orders and the remaining 60 aircraft remain conditional upon SkyWest entering into capacity purchase agreements with other major airlines. SkyWest intends to place the 40 new aircraft into service under the terms of the United CPA discussed above.

On June 17, 2013, SkyWest and Embraer jointly announced an aircraft purchase agreement covering 100 E175-E2 dual-class regional jet aircraft and an option to purchase an additional 100 of the same aircraft.  Deliveries for these E2 aircraft are tentatively planned to start in 2020.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. SkyWest Airlines’ Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N752SK (msn 10209) climbs away from the runway at Los Angeles.

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United Express-SkyWest Airlines: AG Slide Show

United to add new “ski season” flights

United Airlines (Chicago) will add flights to popular U.S. ski destinations for the upcoming winter and spring ski season, with three new routes and increased service on several existing routes.

New Service

On December 12, 2013, United will launch nonstop service from its San Francisco hub to Sun Valley, Idaho, with daily flights offered through March 30, 2014.

United will also begin nonstop service from its Chicago O’Hare hub to Gunnison/Crested Butte and Steamboat Springs/Hayden, Colorado. The Gunnison/Crested Butte flights will begin on December 21, 2013, and the Steamboat Springs/Hayden flights will begin on February 15, 2014. The Gunnison/Crested Butte and Steamboat Springs/Hayden flights will operate through March 29, 2014.

Additional Service on Existing Markets

United will also add flights to existing ski market routes from several of its hubs:

  • Denver to Kalispell/Whitefish, Montana.
  • Houston to Aspen, Colorado.
  • Houston, Los Angeles and Newark to Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
  • Los Angeles to Steamboat Springs/Hayden, Colorado.
  • Newark to Bozeman, Montana.

United Express carrier SkyWest Airlines (United Express) (St. George, UT) will operate the new routes, using Bombardier CRJ700 regional jet aircraft with United First, United Economy Plus and United Economy seating.

SkyWest’s CRJ700 aircraft are among the first being outfitted with United’s new signature seat design that is focused on customer comfort and environmental responsibility.

The multi-tonal leather seats on the CRJ700 aircraft will have more ergonomic and supportive cushioning and additional seat-back storage space in United Economy Plus and United Economy. New technology makes the seats more environmentally friendly by reducing seat weight and volume, contributing to less fuel burn. United will also outfit other aircraft types with the multi-tonal leather interiors and similar cushioning and seat-back storage.

Winter Ski Destinations from All U.S. Hubs

From the Denver hub alone, United offers nonstop flights to 13 ski resorts for the winter ski season. Additionally, the new flights further expand United’s broad range of winter-season service from all of its U.S. hubs to ski destinations across North America, including:

  • Aspen: from Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles and San Francisco
  • Bozeman: from Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, New York/Newark and San Francisco
  • Burlington, Vt.: from Chicago, Cleveland, New York/Newark and Washington
  • Durango, Colo.: from Denver
  • Eagle/Vail, Colo.: from Denver, Houston and New York/Newark
  • Gunnison/Crested Butte: from Chicago, Denver and Houston
  • Hayden/Steamboat Springs: from Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, and New York/Newark
  • Jackson Hole: from Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark and San Francisco
  • Kalispell/Whitefish: from Denver
  • Kelowna, British Columbia: from Los Angeles
  • Mammoth Lakes, Calif.: from Orange County and San Francisco
  • Montrose/Telluride, Colo.: from Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, and New York/Newark
  • Reno/Tahoe, Nev.: from Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco
  • Salt Lake City: from Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco
  • Santa Fe/Taos, N.M.: from Denver
  • Sun Valley: from San Francisco
  • Vancouver, British Columbia: from Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. SkyWest Airlines’ Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N706SK (msn 10149) climbs away from the runway at Los Angeles International Airport.

United Express-SkyWest Airlines: AG Slide Show

United Airlines: AG Slide Show

Silver Airways and United Airlines renew their code-share agreement

Silver Airways (United Express) (Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood and Gainesville, FL) and United Airlines (Chicago) have announced that they have reached agreement reaffirming the code-share relationship between the two carriers on service throughout Florida and the Bahamas. In addition, Silver Airways will continue to operate as an United Express carrier in their shared Mid-Atlantic hubs in Cleveland and Washington, DC (Dulles).

News of the renewed relationship follows a June 2013 release from Silver Airways announcing that it had successfully migrated to a new, stand alone reservations system and website powered by Sabre.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com.

Silver Airways: AG Slide Show

United Express-Silver Airways: AG Slide Show

 

United Airlines introduces a new Bombardier CRJ700 seat design

United Airlines (Chicago) on October 3 unveiled a new, signature seat design focused on customer comfort and environmental responsibility, with a sophisticated, modern look. The company will deploy the new seats on hundreds of aircraft that fly within the United States, Canada, Central America and the Caribbean.

The new design includes:

  • Bold elements, such as multi-tonal leather seat covers, distinctive double-stitch patterns, sculpted contouring and a new United-branded tag
  • More ergonomic and supportive cushioning and additional seat-back storage space in United Economy Plus and United Economy
  • Technology that makes the seats more environmentally friendly by reducing seat weight and volume, contributing to less fuel burn

The airline is introducing the new design with a Bombardier CRJ700 operated by United Express carrier SkyWest Airlines (St. George). United expects to deploy the new look on its domestic mainline aircraft and on regional aircraft operated by United Express carriers. Ultimately, United plans the new design to be on more than 60,000 seats on more than 500 aircraft, including, United anticipates, approximately 400 aircraft by 2015.

The airline developed the seats with global travel and transport design consultant Priestmangoode.

Copyright Photos: United Airlines. The new CRJ700 seats.

United Airlines: AG Slide Show

United Express-SkyWest Airlines: AG Slide Show

United Airlines to drop the Los Angeles-Inyokern route on November 5

United Airlines (Chicago) is dropping the Los Angeles-Inyokern route on November 5 per Airline Route. The United Express route is operated with Embraer EMB-120 Brasilias of SkyWest Airlines (St. George, UT).

Copyright Photo: Mark Durbin/Airlinersgallery.com. Wearing the new identity, Embraer EMB-120ER Brasilia N295SW (msn 120322) taxies at the San Francisco hub.

United Airlines: AG Slide Show

United Express-SkyWest Airlines: AG Slide Show

SkyWest Airlines to open a new maintenance base at South Bend, Indiana

SkyWest Airlines, a subsidiary of SkyWest Inc. (St. George, Utah), has announced it will open a maintenance facility at South Bend Airport (SBN). The facility will begin operations in the coming months in an existing hangar at SBN.

Of the 40 positions created by the facility, 16 of these are expected to be local hires. Positions include parts supply control,
custodial and a facility maintenance manager. The additional positions will be FAA Airframe and Powerplant Mechanics
(A&P Mechanics).

South Bend will become the ninth maintenance base for the airline, in addition to facilities in Chicago (O’Hare), Colorado Springs, Fresno, Milwaukee, Nashville, Palm Springs, Salt Lake City and Tucson. SkyWest will perform routine maintenance and repairs, primarily on the Bombardier-manufactured CRJ200 aircraft, each night at the 46,000-square-foot SBN facility.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. SkyWest Airlines’ Bombardier CRJ200 (CL-600-2B19) N927SW (msn 7693), operated for United Airlines as an United Express carrier, approaches the runway at Los Angeles International Airport.

SkyWest-United Express: AG Slide Show

Combined Route Map:

SkyWest Combined 9:2013 Route Map

Mesa extends its contract with United Airlines to 2019 to operate 20 Bombardier CRJ700s, will also add 30 Embraer 175 aircraft

Mesa Air Group, Inc. (Mesa Airlines) (Phoenix) has announced a new agreement with United Airlines (Chicago) that extends the term of its existing fleet of 20 Bombardier CRJ700 regional jet aircraft to 2019 and adds 30 new United owned Embraer 175 (ERJ 175) aircraft under the United Express contract.

Under the terms of this agreement Mesa will place the new Embraer 175 jets into service over the next two years. Mesa will hire approximately 350 pilots, 300 flight attendants, and 200 maintenance and other support personnel to support the additional aircraft.

“This is truly a great day for Mesa. We will continue to work hard to provide the best possible service to United’s customers,” said Jonathan Ornstein, Mesa’s Chairman and CEO. “Mesa began operating under the United Express banner in 1992, and we are delighted to have this opportunity to expand our longstanding partnership. Our first codeshare agreement with United transformed our company, and I am sure this one will do the same. We are also very pleased to rejoin the Embraer family of operators and look forward to working with our many friends there as well.”

Paul Foley, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, said, “It has always been our goal to exceed the expectations of both our partners and customers. We believe this contract is evidence that our operational performance and industry leading cost structure have begun to pay big dividends for the company and our people. Based on data from the Department of Transportation, Mesa has been the number one performing regional airline for each of the last three years. We’d like to thank all of our people who have contributed to our success and enabled us to compete successfully for this new business.”

Mesa Airlines currently operates over 425 daily system departures to 82 cities, 32 states, Mexico and the District of Columbia, as United Express and US Airways Express under contractual agreements with United Airlines and US Airways, respectively, and independently in Hawaii as go! The airline, founded by Larry and Janie Risley in New Mexico in 1982, has approximately 2,000 employees.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough/AirlinersGallery.com. Mesa Airlines’ Bombardier CRJ700 (CL-600-2C10) N515MJ (msn 10117) arrives at the Washington (Dulles) hub.

United Express-Mesa Airlines: AG Slide Show

United announces new routes from the Chicago O’Hare hub

United Airlines (Chicago) has announced plans to launch new nonstop service from its Chicago hub at O’Hare International Airport to Elmira, New York, and State College, Pennsylvania. The airline also plans to begin new service from Chicago O’hare to Topeka, Kansas, subject to government approval. ExpressJet Airlines (Atlanta) will operate the United Express flights using 50-seat regional jet aircraft. The State College and Topeka flights will begin on January 7, 2014, and the Elmira service will begin on February 13, 2014.

The weekday flight schedules follow. Weekend schedules may vary. Schedules are subject to change.

Chicago – Elmira Elmira – Chicago
Departs Arrives Departs Arrives
2:15 p.m.  5:00 p.m. 6:15 a.m. 7:18 a.m.
9:00 p.m. 11:45 p.m. 5:30 p.m. 6:33 p.m.
Chicago – State College State College – Chicago
Departs Arrives Departs Arrives
1:55 p.m. 4:33 p.m. 6:20 a.m. 7:17 a.m.
 6:45 p.m.  9:23 p.m.  5:03 p.m.  6:00 p.m.
Chicago – Topeka Topeka – Chicago
Departs Arrives Departs Arrives
1:00 p.m.  2:44 p.m. 6:00 a.m. 7:36 a.m.
8:30 p.m. 10:14 p.m. 3:14 p.m. 4:50 p.m.

Elmira and Topeka are both new destinations in United’s route network. The airline currently serves State College from its hub at Washington Dulles.

With these new routes, United has added service to ten new destinations from Chicago O’Hare since the beginning of 2013. Other new year-round and seasonal destinations include Mobile, Alabama; Fairbanks, Alaska; Nassau, Bahamas; Shannon, Ireland; San Jose, Costa Rica; Thunder Bay, Ontario; and Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

United and United Express operate nearly 570 daily flights from the O’Hare hub to more than 125 domestic and more than 30 international destinations.

Copyright Photo: ExpressJet’s Embraer ERJ 145XR (EMB-145XR) N11194 (msn 145940) arrives at the Dulles International hub near Washington.

United Express-ExpressJet: AG Slide Show

Newsworthy Photo of the Day – May 23, 2013

United Express-SkyWest Airlines Embraer EMB-120ER Brasilia N295SW (msn 120322) SFO (Mark Durbin). Image: 912231.

Copyright Photo: Mark Durbin.

United Express-SkyWest Airlines: AG Slide Show

SkyWest orders 100 conditional new Embraer 175s, SkyWest Airlines to operate 40 for United Express

United Express ERJ 175 (CO 91)(Flt)(United)(LRW)

SkyWest, Inc. (SkyWest Airlines and ExpressJet Airlines) (St. George) announced today that it has entered into a Capacity Purchase Agreement (CPA) with United Airlines, Inc. (Chicago) to operate 40 new Embraer 175 (ERJ 175) dual-class regional jet aircraft.  The CPA with United has a term of 12 years and SkyWest will operate under terms and conditions similar to its existing agreements with United.

SkyWest has determined that these 40 regional jet aircraft will be operated by SkyWest Airlines, Inc. (St. George), a wholly-owned subsidiary of SkyWest. Under the agreement, it is anticipated that the 40 aircraft will be introduced into service in the second quarter of 2014, with deliveries continuing to mid-2015.  The aircraft will be configured with 76-seats in dual-class.

SkyWest, Inc. also announced today that it has entered into an agreement with Embraer for the purchase of 100 new Embraer 175 dual-class regional jet aircraft. Of the 100 aircraft, 40 are considered firm deliveries and the remaining 60 aircraft are considered conditional until SkyWest enters into capacity purchase agreements with other major airlines to operate the aircraft.  Deliveries for the 40 firm aircraft are anticipated to begin in the second quarter of 2014 and continue through mid 2015. The aircraft will be configured in 76 seats in dual-class. The agreement also includes options for an additional 100 ERJ 175 aircraft and would be valued at $8.3 billion if all 200 aircraft are ordered.  The initial 40 firm aircraft outlined above will be operated by SkyWest Airlines, Inc.

SkyWest management believes reaching this agreement brings to conclusion a thorough process that also included the negotiation of support and long-term maintenance agreements that will enable SkyWest to efficiently manage the operating costs of the new aircraft.  SkyWest management also believes it has developed an industry-leading agreement that will allow SkyWest to offer competitive benefits to its major partners.

Image: United Airlines.

Video: A SkyWest pilot shows the views from the cockpit:

Current Routes operated for United Airlines by SkyWest Airlines (click on the map for full-size view):

United Express-SkyWest 5:2013 Route Map

United Express/SkyWest Airlines: AG Slide Show

United Airlines orders 30 Embraer ERJ 175 regional jets

United Express ERJ 175 (CO 91)(Flt)(United)(LRW)

United Airlines (Chicago) has announced an agreement to add 30 Embraer ERJ 175 regional jets to the United Express fleet. Under an agreement with Embraer, United will purchase the aircraft with deliveries in 2014 and 2015. These aircraft will be operated by a United Express partner to be announced later.

United also secured options for 40 additional aircraft.

The Embraer ERJ 175 is the first 76-seat regional jet aircraft in the United Express fleet. The aircraft will be configured with 12 United First, 16 Economy Plus and 48 United Economy seats. The design of the aircraft will result in more personal space for customers with wider seats and aisles than those on the 50-seat aircraft. The aircraft can accommodate standard carry-on bags, resulting in more convenience for customers.

As United inducts the new aircraft into the United Express fleet, the company will remove some of the older 50-seat regional jets in the fleet. The E175s will consume 10 percent less fuel per seat and will have less CO2 emissions per seat than the 50-seat aircraft they replace.

Shuttle America currently operates 38 Embraer ERJ 170s for United Airlines.

Image: United Airlines.

United Airlines: AG Slide Show

ExpressJet Airlines joins with Cape Air in the JetBlue University Gateway Program

ExpressJet Airlines (Atlanta) has joined the JetBlue University Gateway Program to give pilots a career path. The following statement was released:

The highly-successful University Gateway Program, a four-way collaboration with JetBlue Airways (New York), Cape Air (Hyannis), the University of North Dakota (UND) and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU), has added another airline.  ExpressJet Airlines, the largest regional airline in the world, will partner with Cape Air to provide a parallel path for aspiring pilots to join JetBlue. The Gateway Program has been designed to facilitate the early-entry of highly-qualified pilots from Aviation Accreditation Board International (AABI) programs, who have appropriate flight instructor experience, into Cape Air, where they further hone their skills. After gaining their Captain’s credentials at Cape Air, pilots can choose to interview with ExpressJet.  If accepted, they will be slotted for a training class providing valuable time as pilots in command.  They then will be eligible for a final interview with JetBlue after gaining their necessary hours.

There are now 140 pilots in the Gateway Program.  To date, four pilots have successfully completed the necessary steps and have been hired by JetBlue, with more qualifying for a final interview every month.  Cape Air expects as many as 50 pilots per year will eventually join JetBlue via the program.

Copyright Photo: Mark Durbin. ExpressJet’s Embraer ERJ 145XR (EMB-145XR) N16147 (msn 145749) is pictured at the Houston (Bush Intercontinental) hub operating as an United Express carrier.

United Express-ExpressJet: AG Slide Show

Routes flown for United Airlines:

Please click on the map for the full size view.

Please click on the map for the full size view.

SkyWest to operate St. George-Denver CRJ200 flights for United

SkyWest Airlines (St. George, UT) has announced new United Express service between its St. George, Utah base and the United Airlines Denver, Colorado hub beginning on June 6, 2013. SkyWest will provide once-daily Denver service utilizing its 50-passenger Canadair Regional Jet (Bombardier) CRJ200s.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing. Bombardier CRJ200 (CL-600-2B19) N927SW (msn 7693) climbs away from Los Angeles International Airport.

SkyWest Airlines: AG Slide Show

United Express-SkyWest: AG Slide Show

SkyWest routes operated for United Airlines:

Please click on the map for the full-size view.

Please click on the map for the full-size view.

ExpressJet to operate the Denver-Dickinson, North Dakota route for United

United Airlines (Chicago) has announced plans to launch twice-daily nonstop service from its Denver hub to Dickinson, North Dakota, beginning on June 6, 2013. ExpressJet Airlines (United Express) (Atlanta) will operate the United Express service using 50-seat regional jet aircraft.

“These new flights underscore United’s ongoing commitment to the Denver hub and complement our existing service to other energy markets in North Dakota,” said Randle Loveland, United’s director of regional sales in Denver. “North Dakota travelers will not only have access to Denver, but also convenient connections from the hub to other destinations, including the U.S. West Coast and Gulf Coast, Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean.

The flight schedules are as follows:

Denver – Dickinson Dickinson – Denver
Departs Arrives Departs Arrives
10:00 a.m. 11:32 a.m.   7:30 a.m. 9:00 a.m.
  8:15 p.m.   9:47 p.m. 11:57 a.m. 1:37 p.m.

Copyright Photo: Keith Burton. Embraer ERJ 145LR (EMB-145LR) N12921 (msn 145354) of ExpressJet Airlines approaches Toronto (Pearson) for landing.

United Airlines: AG Slide Show

United Express-ExpressJet Airlines: AG Slide Show

Route Map for the United Express operation:

Please click on the map for the full-size view.

Please click on the map for the full-size view.

United Airlines to restore two routes from the Cleveland hub

United Airlines (Chicago) will restore two United Express routes from the Cleveland hub. The Cleveland-Nashville route will be restored on January 13, 2013 followed by Cleveland-Oklahoma City on February 14, 2013 per Airline Route.

In other news, United Airlines yesterday (October 1) announced that it exceeded its 80 percent on-time domestic performance goal for the month of September, and is rewarding its eligible employees with a $50 on-time bonus to recognize this performance. The airline ended the month with an 82.0 percent domestic on-time arrival rate, showing continued significant improvement from the prior months.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough. Embraer ERJ 145LR (EMB-145LR) N15555 (msn 145594) prepares to land at Washington (Reagan National).

United Express-ExpressJet Airlines: 

United Airlines to launch two new routes from the Cleveland hub

United Airlines (Chicago) has announced plans to launch daily nonstop service from its Cleveland hub at Hopkins International Airport to Nashville and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The United Express flights will be operated by ExpressJet Airlines (United Express) (Atlanta) using 50-seat regional jet aircraft, with the Nashville service beginning on December 19, 2012, and the Oklahoma City service beginning on February 14, 2013.

The weekday flight schedules are as follows:

Cleveland – Nashville Nashville – Cleveland
Departs Arrives Departs Arrives
8:55 a.m. 9:25 a.m. 11:45 a.m. 2:10 p.m.
5:00 p.m. 5:40 p.m. 5:45 p.m. 8:05 p.m.
Cleveland – Oklahoma City Oklahoma City – Cleveland
Departs Arrives Departs Arrives
8:40 a.m. 10:30 a.m. 10:55 a.m. 2:30 p.m.

Separately, United will also discontinue service between Cleveland and Green Bay, Wisconsin, effective December 18, 2012. United will continue to offer connecting service between Cleveland and Green Bay through Chicago (O’Hare).

In other news, United is dropping the twice-weekly Guam-Okinawa route on October 31.

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck. Embraer ERJ 145LR (EMB-145LR) N14959 (msn 145091) prepares to land at Baltimore/Washington.

United Airlines: 

United Express-ExpressJet Airlines: 

SkyWest Airlines to start Denver-Laramie service on November 4

SkyWest Airlines (St. George) operating for United Airlines, will operate twice-daily Denver flights to Laramie, Wyoming starting on November 4. The United Express flights will be operated by SkyWest Airlines utilizing the 30-seat Embraer-manufactured EMB-120ER Brasilia.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing. Embraer EMB-120ER Brasilia N584SW (msn 120352) completes its final approach into Los Angeles International Airport.

United Express-SkyWest Airlines: 

Colgan Air operates its last revenue flight

Colgan Air (2nd) (Memphis) is now in the history file. The airline has operated its last revenue flight. As planned, Colgan Air operated its last flight, flight UA 3923, from Washington (Dulles) to Albany, NY as an United Express carrier on September 5.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough. Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) N34NG (msn 4340) climbs away from the Dulles hub.

United Express-Colgan Air: 

Silver Airways to operate as an United Express carrier at Washington Dulles

Silver Airways (Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood and Gainesville) as a follow-up to our previous report, will operate its new services this summer to Washington Dulles as an United Express carrier. According to AltoonaMirror.com the agreement has been finalized and was a deal breaker if not accomplished. Silver Airways will operate SAAB 340B aircraft on the routes into IAD from West Virginia and western Pennsylvania. It is still unclear if the SAABs will be operated in Silver’s colors or the United Express livery. Service is expected to start on August 1 and will replace Colgan Air.

From Dulles, Silver Airways will serve four communities in West Virginia and two in Pennsylvania as follows:

 West Virginia – Beckley (BKW), Clarksburg (CKB), Lewisburg (LWB) and Morgantown (MGW)
 Pennsylvania – Altoona (AOO) and Johnstown (JST)

Read the full article: CLICK HERE

As of June 2012, Silver Airways currently operates a fleet of twenty-one Beechcraft 1900D and five SAAB 340B/Plus aircraft. Five of the twenty-one B1900D aircraft have been removed from service and replaced with the five SAAB 340B/Plus models. The remaining sixteen 1900D aircraft are in service.

Silver Airways currently serves four principal markets:

Florida intrastate routes, Florida routes to and from the Bahamas, Cleveland EAS routes, and Montana EAS routes. The Florida intrastate routes include Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Key West, West Palm Beach, Tampa, Gainesville, Tallahassee, and Pensacola. The Florida routes to and from the Bahamas serve Bimini, Freeport, Treasure Cay, Marsh Harbour, Eleuthera, Governor’s Harbour, and George Town.

The Cleveland EAS routes serve Cleveland, Parkersburg, Lewisburg, Dubois, Franklin, Bradford, and Jamestown.

The Montana EAS routes serve Billings, Helena, Lewiston, Havre, Glasgow, Wolf Point, Sidney, Glendive, and Miles City.

During its second year, Silver Airways anticipates operations changes to its fleet, routes, maintenance, and infrastructure and bench strength. The Company expects continued replacement of the 1900D aircraft with the SAAB 340B/Plus aircraft. By the end of its second year, the Company will have replaced all of the 1900D models in its Florida and Bahamas markets, leaving four 1900D aircraft in its Cleveland market and four in its Montana market.

As stated above, on August 1, 2012, the Company will begin EAS routes out of Washington Dulles Airport operating to Altoona, Johnstown, Morgantown, Clarksburg, Shenandoah Valley, Beckley, and Lewisburg using three Saab 340B/Plus aircraft.

On October 1, 2012 the Company will begin EAS routes out of Atlanta operating to Hattiesburg, Meridian, Gainesville, Greenville, Tupelo, Muscle Shoals, and Lewisburg using three SAAB 340B/Plus aircraft. The Company may add additional routes as opportunities arise. The Company will continue to grow its in-house maintenance capabilities in Gainesville and will be adding the SAAB 340B/Plus heavy check program.

On the financial side, for the 12 months ending on April 30, 2012, the Company reported a net loss of $12.3 million on revenues of $88.9 million.

However the Company only had $3.6 million of unrestricted cash on hand at the end of the period.

Can it handle all of this expansion?

Colgan Air to cut 95 jobs at Houston as it ends United Express operations

Colgan Air (2nd) (Memphis) is planning to cut 95 jobs at Houston (Bush Intercontinental) according to this report by CBS News and the Associated Press as the company phases out flying as an United Express carrier. Colgan is expected to end UA operations around August 1.

Read the full story: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Mark Durbin.

United Express-Colgan Air: 

United denies its is downsizing the Cleveland hub

United Airlines (Chicago) has denied local media reports that it intends to downsize the Cleveland Hopkins International Airport (CLE) hub. The reports started when the airline announced it was discontinuing the local Cleveland-Cincinnati route on August 1, 2012. This feeder route is operated by United Express carrier CommutAir (Burlington) (top and bottom).

In fact, United is adding flights at CLE (still not back to the pre-merger numbers). According to the Plain Dealer (Cleveland.com), UA is adding daily flights to Boston, Denver, Dallas/Fort Worth, Washington (Dulles), Portland (Maine), San Francisco, St. Louis and three more daily flights to Chicago (O’Hare).

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

United is also adding 17 weekly flights at Cincinnati.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough.

United Airlines: 

CommutAir Route Map (adding Washington Dulles in July 2012):

Click on the map to expand.

United to add Shreveport and Grand Forks service from Denver, Anchorage flights to go to year-round

United Airlines (Chicago) has announced plans to launch daily nonstop service linking its Denver hub with two new markets: Shreveport, Louisiana, and Grand Forks, North Dakota. In addition, United will expand existing summer-season flights between Denver and Anchorage to year-round service.

This new announcement comes one week after United announced daily, nonstop service between Denver and its hub at Tokyo Narita International Airport, starting in the spring of 2013.

Shreveport: Once-daily, nonstop service between Denver and Shreveport starts on August 28.  United Express carrier ExpressJet Airlines (Atlanta) will operate the flight with 50-seat Embraer ERJ 145 regional jets (above).  Shreveport Regional Airport serves north Louisiana, east Texas and southwest Arkansas.

Top Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough.

United Express-ExpressJet: 

Grand Forks: Twice-daily, nonstop service between Denver and Grand Forks International Airport begins on October 3.  United Express carrier SkyWest Airlines (St. George) will operate the flights with 50-seat Canadair CRJ200 regional jets.

Middle Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing.

United Express-SkyWest: 

Anchorage: United’s seasonal service between Denver and Anchorage, launched on May 1 with Boeing 737-800 aircraft, will operate year-round.

Bottom Copyright Photo: Tony Storck.

United Airlines: 

Mesa reinforces its on-time performance again in March

Mesa Air Group, Inc. (Mesa Airlines) (Phoenix), the number one on-time regional airline in 2010 and 2011, announces its number one rank among US regional airlines for on-time arrivals in March 2012, as reported by US Department of Transportation (DOT), Bureau of Transportation Statistics in the Air Travel Consumer Report, the industry recognized measure of performance. Mesa’s operational performance has ranked it as the number one On-time Regional Airline every month since April 2010, and the latest award reinforces Mesa’s continued commitment to serve our Code Share Partners and passengers with safe, reliable on-time air transportation. In addition to continuing its status as the number one on-time regional airline, Mesa was ranked first among regional carriers with the fewest mishandled bags and was ranked first among all airlines for having the fewest complaints per 100,000 passengers carried.

The airline’s accomplishment is especially impressive given the airline’s footprint of service in 34 states nationwide, including significant service at four of the nation’s five busiest airports. Mesa Airlines operates as US Airways Express and United Express under contractual agreements with US Airways and United Airlines, respectively, and independently as go!, a Low Fare airline which is about to enter its 6th year of offering low fares to visitors and residents of Hawai’i as the second largest inter-island airline based on passengers carried.

With these announcements about its on-time performance, Mesa is building its case for reliability.

Top Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough.

United Express-Mesa Slide Show: CLICK HERE

US Airways-Mesa Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Bottom Copyright Photo: Bruce Drum.

Republic Airlines to become an United Express carrier, will operate 32 Bombardier Q400s

Republic Airways Holdings Inc. (Indianapolis) has announced that its Republic Airlines (2nd) (Indianapolis) subsidiary has reached a tentative agreement to operate 32 Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) aircraft under the United Express brand. The Capacity Purchase Agreement (CPA) is expected to become effective in the third quarter of 2012 and continue for approximately eight (8) years. The tentative agreement includes 28 aircraft currently in operation at Colgan Air (2nd) (Memphis) and four aircraft currently operated by Republic in its brand division. This effectively ends the former Lynx Aviation (Denver) operation (see below) for Frontier Airlines (2nd) (Denver). Republic Airlines took over the Lynx Aviation operation on March 19, 2011. Will the four Q400s now be operated in Denver for United?

The agreement with Republic is contingent on completing negotiations and reaching binding agreements with aircraft lessors and maintenance providers, which is expected to occur during the second quarter of 2012.

Top Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough. Colgan Air is getting out of the airline business and will no longer operate its 28 Q400s for United. The SAAB 340Bs are also being phased out. Luckily for Republic, the aircraft are already painted.

United Express-Colgan Air Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Frontier-Lynx Aviation Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Bottom Copyright Photo: TMK Photography. This announcement also ends the former Lynx Aviation operation (now operated as Republic Airlines 2nd) which currently operates the four Bombardier DHC-8-402s (Q400s) for Frontier Airlines from the Denver hub to the close-in cities of Aspen, Colorado Springs and Durango.

Pinnacle to shed 450 pilot positions over the next 18 months

Pinacle Airlines Corporation (Memphis), currently reorganizing under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, is planning to shed around 450 pilot positions over the next 18 months. The group intends to also shed 97 Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400), SAAB 340B and Bombardier CRJ900 aircraft as it adjusts its contracts. Colgan Air will also be closed down by November 2012. The United Express and US Airways Express operations will also be terminated under the current reorganization proposals.

Read the full report from Memphis Business Journal: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck. The current Colgan Air operates for United Express and US Airways Express

United Express-Colgan Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Pinnacle Airlines Corporation files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, will phase out Colgan’s SAAB 340Bs and Q400s

Pinnacle Airlines Corporation (Memphis) yesterday (April 1-not an April Fool’s Day joke) announced that the Company and its subsidiaries have filed voluntary petitions for relief under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York (the “Court”). Pinnacle intends to use the Chapter 11 process to continue implementing a comprehensive turnaround plan aimed at addressing its operational and financial challenges in a rapidly evolving regional airline industry.

According to the company, “During this process, the company will remain focused on providing passengers with safe, reliable and timely service in collaboration with its network partners, Delta Connection, United Express and US Airways Express.”

Pinnacle expects to accomplish several key initiatives during the restructuring process to help ensure that it returns to profitability and remains viable over the long term as the regional airline industry continues to contract and transform. These initiatives include restructuring its key operating agreements with Delta Air Lines, winding down its operations with United Airlines, completing the wind-down of its Essential Air Service (EAS) flying with US Airways, achieving cost savings from its workforce, identifying additional opportunities across the organization to reduce costs, and ensuring that it has the appropriate fleet, staffing levels and network to operate profitably on an ongoing basis.

Sean Menke (formerly the CEO of Frontier Airlines), President and CEO of Pinnacle, said, “We intend to use the Chapter 11 process to reset our financial and operational structure in order to position Pinnacle for viability over the long term.  Quite simply, our current business model is not sustainable, as increasing operating expenses, liquidity constraints, business integration delays and difficulties associated with combining our operations have hindered our ability to maximize our growth potential.  Following a lengthy review process, and with the assistance of independent financial, industry and legal advisors, our Board of Directors determined that a court-supervised restructuring is the only feasible course of action to implement our turnaround plan.”

Menke continued, “We are committed to delivering safe, reliable travel throughout this process, and thank all of our employees for their continued focus on providing our mainline partners and their customers with on-time flights and superior in-flight service.  Our objective is to emerge from this process as a stronger, more focused company, with a revised business model, a substantially improved cost structure and operating agreements that will position us for profitable growth in the future.”

In conjunction with the filing, Pinnacle has received a commitment for secured super-priority debtor-in-possession financing (“DIP Financing”) from Delta Air Lines, Inc. in the amount of $74.3 million. Following Court approval, $44.3 million will be used by Pinnacle to repay a secured promissory note held by Delta. The remaining $30 million in DIP financing, combined with cash generated by Pinnacle’s ongoing operations, will be available to help ensure that Pinnacle has sufficient liquidity to meet its operational and restructuring needs.

Pinnacle has filed a series of customary motions with the Court seeking to ensure the continuation of normal operations, including requesting Court approval to continue to pay employee wages, salaries and benefits without interruption and to pay suppliers for fuel and other goods and services provided after the filing date.

Pinnacle noted that it previously filed withdrawal notices with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) for all of the Essential Air Service (EAS) markets currently served by Colgan Air, a Pinnacle subsidiary. Pinnacle has asked the DOT to establish an accelerated process to identify replacement carriers for the EAS markets it serves, which are currently served by SAAB 340B aircraft.

The remaining SAAB 340B fleet that Colgan operates for United Express will be wound down over the next several months, with these operations projected to end by August 1, 2012.  Similarly, Colgan’s Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) aircraft operations will be wound down by November 30, 2012 (see below).

Pinnacle Airlines Corporation is the parent company of Pinnacle Airlines, Inc. and Colgan Air, Inc. Flying as Delta Connection, United Express and US Airways Express, Pinnacle Airlines Corporation operating subsidiaries operate 199 regional jets and 62 turboprops on more than 1,540 daily flights to 188 cities and towns in the United States, Canada, Mexico and Belize.

Top Copyright Photo: Jay Selman.

Delta Connection-Pinnacle Slide Show: CLICK HERE

United Express-Colgan Air Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Middle Copyright Photo: Mark Durbin.

Bottom Copyright Photo: TMK Photography.

Mesa Airlines wins the “triple crown” for regional carriers in 2011 and January 2012

Mesa Airlines (Mesa Air Group) (Phoenix) which won the number one on-time regional airline award in 2010 and 2011, obtained the number one rank among U.S. regional airlines for on-time arrivals in January 2012, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation Air Travel Consumer Report, the industry recognized measure of performance. In addition to being ranked first among regional airlines for on-time arrivals, Mesa was ranked first among regional airlines for fewest mishandled bags and first among all air carriers for fewest complaints per 100,000 passengers – the “Triple Crown” of operational performance. This recognition and the company’s strong operational performance reflect Mesa’s continued commitment to its Code Share Partners and Passengers.

Mesa Airlines currently operates 77 aircraft with over 395 daily system departures to 87 cities, 33 states, Mexico and the District of Columbia. Mesa operates as US Airways Express and United Express under contractual agreements with US Airways and United Airlines, respectively, and independently as go!. In June 2006, Mesa launched inter-island Hawai’i service as go! and in October 2009 formed a joint-venture with Mokulele Airlines. The go! Mokulele operation links Honolulu to the neighbor island airports of Hilo, Kona, Kahului, Ho’olehua, Lana’i and Lihu’e.

Copyright Photo: Brian McDonough.

United Express-Mesa Airlines High-Res Slide Show: CLICK HERE

Shuttle America’s Embraer 170 N637RW makes a nose wheel-up landing at Newark

Shuttle America’s (United Express) (Indianapolis) Embraer ERJ 170-100SE N637RW (msn 17000051) while operating flight UA 5124 from Atlanta to Newark with 69 passengers and four crew members last night (February 27) was forced to make a nose wheel-up landing closing runway 22L at EWR. The passengers exited the aircraft using the emergency chutes.

Read the full report from the New York Times: CLICK HERE

United Express-Shuttle America Photo Gallery: CLICK HERE

Shuttle America’s ERJ 170 routes operated for United are in blue:

Click on the map to expand.

United Airlines announces new summer domestic routes

United Airlines (Chicago) today announced plans to launch year-round and seasonal service on several new routes to begin in the summer of 2012.

United will begin daily year-round service between Washington/Dulles International Airport (IAD) and Honolulu (HNL) on June 7, 2012, the only nonstop service between the two points. The flights will operate using the pictured Boeing 767-400 aircraft.

The airline will also add seasonal service to several popular summer travel destinations.

Alaska: New daily service between Denver (DEN) and Fairbanks, Alaska (FAI), will operate from June 7, 2012 through August 27, 2012, using Boeing 737-800 aircraft. Fairbanks offers access to Denali National Park, one of Alaska’s most visited destinations. The flights complement United’s existing Alaska service to Anchorage from hubs in Denver, Chicago, Houston and San Francisco, as well as Seattle/Tacoma.

South Dakota: United Express will offer daily seasonal service between Houston’s Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) and Rapid City, S.D. (RAP), gateway to the Black Hills, Mount Rushmore and the Badlands National Park, from June 7, 2012, to August 27, 2012. ExpressJet will operate the flights using Embraer ERJ 145 aircraft. United currently serves Rapid City from its Denver and Chicago hubs.

Wyoming: The airline will also add summer-season flights between its Houston and San Francisco (SFO) hubs and Jackson Hole, Wyoming (JAC), which attracts millions of summer visitors to nearby Yellowstone National Park and the Grand Tetons. The Houston flights will operate twice-weekly from June 8, 2012, through August 27, 2012, using Boeing 757-200 aircraft. The San Francisco flights will operate daily from July 1, 2012, through August 27, 2012, as United Express, with Bombardier CR700 aircraft flown by SkyWest Airlines. These flights are in addition to United’s existing service to Jackson Hole from hubs in Chicago, Denver and Los Angeles.

With these new route additions, United will remain within the previously announced capacity guidance.

Since the October 2010 merger of United and Continental, the larger combined fleet has given the company flexibility to better meet market demand. United has added new routes from its hubs to international destinations such as Lagos, Nigeria; Guadalajara, Mexico; Montreal, Canada; Port-au-Prince, Haiti; Shanghai, China, and Stuttgart, Germany, along with new intra-Asia routes between the Tokyo hub and Hong Kong and between the Guam hub and Okinawa, Japan.

The merger also enabled the company to add a number of new domestic routes by using a mix of mainline and regional aircraft from both carriers more efficiently.

Copyright Photo: Jeffrey S. DeVore.

United Slide Show: CLICK HERE

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