Once finalized, the three-year agreement will also give US Airways options to up-gauge to SkyWest-operated Bombardier CRJ700s to replace the CRJ200s and Dash 8s...

SkyWest, Inc. subsidiary SkyWest Airlines and US Airways have signed a letter of intent for SkyWest to operate 14 aircraft on US Airways Express services.

Once finalized, the three-year agreement will provide flying for 14 of SkyWest Airlines’ 50-passenger Bombardier CRJ200 regional jets on the US Airways Express network.

The agreement will also give US Airways options to up-gauge to larger, SkyWest-operated Bombardier CRJ700s to replace the CRJ200 and Dash 8 service that Mesa Airlines currently provides to US Airways at the major carrier’s Phoenix hub.

SkyWest Airlines anticipates its service as a US Airways Express codeshare partner will begin in early-to mid-2012 and the regional airline expects the aircraft to be allocated from SkyWest’s existing fleet. SkyWest also says it will be compensated in similar fashion to its existing capacity-purchase agreements with other major codeshare partners.

Details of the agreement are being finalized and are subject to approval by US Airways’ and SkyWest Airlines’ boards of directors.

This photograph shows the cockpit of a SkyWest Airlines Bombardier CRJ200. SkyWest Airlines operates CRJ200s for the Delta Connection and United Express networks and has reached an agreement with US Airways to operate 14 CRJ200s (and potentially CRJ700s as well) on US Airways Express services

SkyWest Airlines says the agreement will further diversify its flight-operations portfolio and will provide US Airways customers with SkyWest Airlines’ quality and reliability.

“We are pleased to add US Airways to SkyWest Airlines’ strong partner portfolio,” says Russell “Chip” Childs, SkyWest Airlines’ president and COO. “SkyWest’s people have done incredible work to provide a reliable, efficient product, and we look forward to offering that quality to US Airways customers.”

Along with US Airways Shuttle and US Airways Express, US Airways operates more than 3,200 flights per day and serves more than 200 communities in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Europe, the Middle East, the Caribbean, Central and South America. The airline employs 32,000 aviation professionals worldwide and is a member of the Star Alliance network, which offers its customers more than 21,000 daily flights to 1,185 airports in 185 countries.

Together with its US Airways Express partners, US Airways carries approximately 80 million passengers each year and operates hubs in Charlotte, Philadelphia and Phoenix, as well as a “focus city” airports at Washington, D.C.’s Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport.

SkyWest Airlines is the world’s largest independently owned regional airline and its parent company SkyWest, Inc. is by far the world’s biggest regional-airline holding company.

With a fleet of more than 300 aircraft, SkyWest Airlines’ 11,000-plus staff operate more than 1,800 flights each day to 162 destinations throughout North America. SkyWest partners with the world’s largest network carriers, including United Airlines, Delta Air Lines, AirTran Airways (now a Southwest Airlines subsidiary) and Alaska Airlines.

Parent company SkyWest, Inc. also owns Atlantic Southeast Airlines and ExpressJet, which are now undergoing an operational merger that would result in an Atlanta-headquartered airline with some 400 regional aircraft.

SkyWest, Inc. originally proposed to call the resulting large carrier SureJet but announced on July 15 that “significant concerns” voiced by the employees of the two carriers about this name had persuaded the parent company to “put a ground stop” on using it so SkyWest could solicit further input from employees. SkyWest’s headquarters are in St. George, Utah.

For more information on the company, go to www.skywest.com.