CRJ200 Airline Pilot

The personal experiences, thoughts of an CRJ captain

Do You Know What A Regional Airline Is?

Posted by Jeffrey on June 16, 2008

It is always confusing to the general public what a “regional airline” is. Regional airlines are synonymous with “commuter airline.” Regional Airlines are generally feeders to a main airlines hub. For instance, SkyWest is a regional airline. There are over 50 regional airlines alone in the United States but only 13 or so fly for heavy metal. You can see a list of regional airlines by visiting http://www.raa.org/statistics/regionalairlinecompanies.html.

Today I am in Durango, CO. It is a relatively small town in Colorado, near the “Four Corners” that has airline service. The runway here is not long enough or strong enough to hold say a Boeing 737 or Airbus 319. The impression that I got from the people I talked to was that they appreciate the services provided their community by Delta and United even though it is only a “regional” airline that is providing service.

One thing I find over and over is that travelers don’t even know that they are flying a regional airline, which is how the majors want it. It appears to the traveler that the travel is seamless.

Regional airlines provide an important service though. Regional pilots and flight attendants are paid less than major airline pilots and flight attendants and fly airplanes that use less fuel and less maintenance hence helping to keep the price of a ticket in check. Now I know, gas prices and subsequently ticket prices are shooting even higher but if there wasn’t regional airlines providing the service, the costs would be even higher.

One final note, we are well trained and our number one goal is always safety. So rest assure, if you are flying a regional airline, we have been trained well and our airplanes are maintain in great condition!

Till next time…


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