Contracts between major and regionals


Just a quick question regarding the contracts between regional and majors.
It is my understanding that Horizon is owned by Alaska and Envoy is part of American.
Then, how come both majors also contract with other regionals to operate their regional routes?
Are Horizon and Envoy alone not sufficient to carry the load?


There was a time when each major essentially had one regional that did all, or most of, their flying. This was the case with American and American Eagle, Continental and ExpressJet, and Delta and Comair. Eventually the majors realized that this was putting all their eggs in one basket. One hiccup and their entire regional system could be down. It also gave the work groups more leverage than the majors wanted them to have. So the majors diversified into having different carriers.


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Everything Chris said is dead on, in addition many of the Regionals (including those that are wholly owed) are run and treated like separate businesses. In some cases an unaffiliated Regional will actually come in with a bid to operate at lower cost saving the Major money.


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@Chris & @Adam

Interesting. Glad I asked the question. Thank you sirs!

Here is a good article you might also find helpful Kevin.