RAA 2015: SkyWest Airlines prepares for new partnership

SkyWest Airlines is gearing up to put a new brand on the Embraer 175 when the first of seven of the type to be flown on behalf of Alaska Airlines joins the fleet in July.All seven aircraft are scheduled to be in SkyWest’s fleet by the first quarter of next year, reported Mike Thompson, COO, SkyWest Airlines. The carrier has plenty of experience with the aircraft, having been the launch partner on the E175s for United Airlines. “We now have 32 of the 40 aircraft under that agreement, so we should finish those deliveries this year,” Thompson noted.Operationally, the airline has been at the top of its game recently. “For three days in March we had perfect reliability, which is some achievement when you have more than 330 aircraft operating across five partners,” declared Thompson. Also, we are providing first class products on ever more aircraft.A milestone was for SkyWest was reached on 5 May, Thompson noted, when the airline said goodbye to its Embraer 120 Brasilias. “By January we had just 12 EMB 120s and we have been winding them down since then.” The carrier now has an all-jet fleet and helping to care for that fleet will be a new maintenance base in Boise, MT.Bernie Baldwin, editor, Low-Fare & Regional Airlines/LARAnews.netCleveland, Ohio

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