U.S. Essential Air Service
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The four largest airline participating in Essential Air Service contracts, TOP: Southern Airways Express C208, Cape Air C402 ; BOTTOM. Boutique PC12 , SkyWest CRJ200 (Photo: AirlineGeeks | Joey Gerardi)

Essential Air Service: What It Is and Why It's Needed

Every year, people around the country pay their taxes and begin to complain about which government programs are necessary and which are not. And every year the same question comes up: why does the government shell out millions of dollars in federal aid to airlines in order to fly — in some cases empty aircraft — to cities nobody has ever heard of? Because it’s essential. History of EAS Essential Air Service has played an interesting role in this country…

Unique Connection Series Trip Report: Watertown, South Dakota

If you have read my articles in the past, you know I love out-of-the-way airports, airlines, and aircraft. This will be the second trip report in my “Unique Connection Series”, the first of which can be found here. Overview For this Unique Connection, I will be starting in Chicago and…

Essential Air Service News — January 2022

Note from the writer: In the commercial aviation world, there is always news to report, and even the smallest airports have news to report on. This will be a different segment than the "EAS Round-Up" stories, which focus only on the Essential Air Service contracts that have been changed or…

SkyWest Requests More Route Terminations

United — through its regional carrier United Express — ended service to 11 small cities around the country, not more than two weeks ago. Unfortunately, in the next 90-days, they will be adding two more destinations to that list both of which are located in northern New York State. St.…

Interviews: Southern Airways Express Receives King Air After Delay

Despite knowing a lot about the Essential Air Service, or EAS, program and what goes on in it there are still some things that slip past and go unnoticed. Southern Airways Express won the contract for the community of Chadron, Neb., (CDR) to operate daily flights to Denver on the…

Air Choice One, Down to a Single Route

Over the course of an airline's lifetime, there are natural lulls and peaks, new destinations are added while other destinations are discontinued and this is just normal for any and all airlines around the globe, but this carrier has had nothing but a decline in recent years. Air Choice One…

EAS Round Up – Part 5

Essential Air Service (EAS) has been in the news frequently the past couple of months, and large airports aren’t the only airports that have news to report on. This is a continuation of the series, titled ‘EAS Round up’, and will touch on any news regarding the contracts in the…

Denver Air Connection Spreads Its Wings

Colorado-based Denver Air Connection, or DAC for short, has had a very successful year. In just the past year and a half, it went from just four passenger destinations to nine, and the carrier is not done yet. Between May and August of 2020, it added Clovis, N.M.; Thief River…

Deep Dive: The Shortest Routes of the US Commuter Carriers

With air travel picking back up around the globe, Singapore Airlines has resumed the longest flight in the world from the city-state of Singapore to New York City. Though unlike before the pandemic, the flight now operates into New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport rather than across the Upper…

Deep Dive: The Shortest Routes of the Major US Carriers

With air travel picking back up around the globe, Singapore Airlines has resumed the longest flight in the world from the city-state of Singapore to New York City. Though unlike before the pandemic, the flight now operates into New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport rather than across the Upper…