Telling Three Decades of Regional Airline Stories in One Chart

Click here for the completed interactive chart

It’s impossible to keep track of the regional airline industry in the US: who flew for whom? Who bought which rival, only to spin them off later and be bought by their mainline partner later? Who even exists anymore? What happened to all of the regional airlines we remember?

As impossible a task as this is, we’ve taken a step toward visualizing the regional airline industry in the U.S. over the past three decades. It’s not yet perfect, but we are hoping this may jog some memories. This is not a chart of all regional airlines in the U.S. over the past 30 years. It is a chart of as many regional airlines with mainline code-sharing partnerships during that time.

As a first draft, we’ve produced a flat image-ish file that can be zoomed as far as your browser will allow. Clicking the image below will take you to the large chart which will allow zooming. To do this, likely hold ‘ctrl’ and scroll with your mouse to view the smaller details. If you’re on a mobile device, just pinch. Whatever your method, take the time to view the ebbs and flows of this crazy industry.

We hope to introduce future versions with interactive elements to better tell the countless stories of these airlines. Take a stroll down memory lane, and please let us know of anything we’ve missed or other areas our memories may have been fuzzy. It’s been a while. I’m sure we missed a few.

Click here for the completed interactive chart

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Courtney Miller

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Mark Strebe
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Mark Strebe

RegionsAir flew for TWA, American Connection, and Continental Express in the 1997-2008 timeframe.

Dan
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Dan

I didn’t think Skyway ever became associated with Mesa (if I read that chart right).

Great mapping by the way.

JetTech
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JetTech

Midwest Airlines operated 99-seat Boeing 717 jets.
Midwest Airlines used Midwest Connect name to operate smaller jets flown under contract by SkyWest Inc. and Republic Airways Holdings Inc. SkyWest operated a dozen Bombardier CRJ200 50-seat regional jets, and Republic flew a dozen Embraer 170 regional jets, each with 76 seats, under the Midwest Connect name.
http://archive.jsonline.com/business/37143359.html/

JetTech
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JetTech

AirTran has announced it will launch three daily flights between the Akron airport and Milwaukee’s Mitchell International Airport, beginning Jan,5 2010. The route will be handled by AirTran regional partner, SkyWest Airlines.

Ken Swartz
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Courtney, excellent presentation. The Mesaba Airlines order for 25 DHC-8-100 in the early 1990s was designed to boost the order book of de Havilland Canada’ prior to its sale to Bombardier (51%) and the Government of Ontario (49%).