Jettisoning Regional Jets
"The day of the regional jet is over," airline consultant Mike Boyd declared in a USA Today article. That news is both surprising, ...
"The day of the regional jet is over," airline consultant Mike Boyd declared in a USA Today article.
That news is both surprising, given that only two years ago airlines couldn't get enough of them, and disappointing to many midsize cities, which are likely to experience reductions in both service and competition.
As recently as January 2004, my Governing colleague Chris Swope wrote, "The planes, with 30 to 90 seats, are opening up new long-distance routes that never were economical before."
But since then, the economic winds have shifted: The soaring fuel-cost-to-passenger ratio and competition from low-cost carriers have wiped out small jets' profitability. In addition, financial turbulence in the airline industry has resulted in canceled orders and relegated many 50-seat RJs to storage in the desert.
For the moment, new-generation 70-seat jets are still viewed as viable and may keep the runways busy in some second-tier communities. But others will be forced to face the fact that airline service can evaporate almost as fast as a contrail.
Join the Discussion
After you comment, click Post. You can enter an anonymous Display Name or connect to a social profile.
Public Defender: San Francisco Jail Guards Forced Inmates to Fight Each Other1 hour ago
Regional Banks Fill Rust Belt Industrial Niche1 hour ago
Newark Could Be the Next Brooklyn1 hour ago
Anti-Gay Indiana Law Prompts Business to Leave the State1 hour ago
Seattle's Kingdome Debts Finally Paid Off—15 Years After Stadium's Destruction1 hour ago
Long Lines for Marijuana Giveaway in D.C.56 minutes ago