Trans States Airlines, which currently operates 50 seat Embraer ERJ-145 regional jets for United Express, informed employees that they will go out of business at the end of the year.
Trans States Route Map
The letter states that United wants other providers to operate their ERJ-145s, and they have a hard time attracting aircraft captains in any case, so they’re going to wind down the business.
Trans States Airlines sent a letter out to employees today saying that they will conclude their business at the end of 2020. The letter states that profit margins are thin in the regional airline industry and although they feel they are operating the best equipment for the job, the market environment coupled with the pilot shortage has led the company to reach the conclusion that they will not be able to continue operating beyond the end of 2020.
Trans States Airlines began flying hopes around Missouri to places like Joplin and the Ozarks. They picked up business as TWA Express out of St. Louis in 1985, and in 1989 began flying out of Los Angeles as USAir Express. That’s where I regularly took flights on their 18 seat Jetstream 31 turboprops visiting Fresno. They used to operate as Delta Connection as well.
Operating exclusively for United put them in a difficult position, not unlike what Atlantic Coast Airlines once dealt with at Washington Dulles. They made the smart decision to cease operating, rather than continue under their own brand the way Atlantic Coast did.
While Trans States’ business wasn’t diversified, their parent company of Trans States also owns Compass Airlines and GoJet, and those brands will continue to fly.