Hannigan
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Independence Air Starts June 16th!

Tue Apr 06, 2004 12:53 am

Dulles, VA, (April 5, 2004) – Atlantic Coast Airlines Holdings, Inc. (ACA) (Nasdaq: ACAI) today announced it has reached an agreement with United Airlines providing for an orderly transition and exit plan for all its United Express aircraft as a result of United’s decision to reject its agreement with ACA. The transition is scheduled to begin June 4, 2004 and continue through August 5, 2004. The agreement is subject to bankruptcy court approval. A hearing will be held on April 16, 2004.

This agreement clears a significant hurdle in the ongoing transition of Atlantic Coast Airlines from a fee-per-departure carrier to its new identity as Independence Air—the low-fare airline that will serve Washington Dulles International Airport with a schedule of over 300 daily departures this summer to destinations across the U.S. The Independence Air operation at Washington Dulles will be the largest low-fare hub in America.

The last date of service for the ACA aircraft in the United Express schedule is as follows:

Date - CRJs to Exit United Express - J-41s to Exit

June 3 - 30 - 17

July 6 - 30 - -

August 4 - 26 - 5


As each of the company’s 50-passenger CRJ regional jets exits the United Express program, it will undergo a complete interior upgrade—including the installation of new leather slimline seating—as well as a complete exterior conversion to the new Independence Air logo and colors. They will be joined by a fleet of at least 25 Airbus A319s, which will allow Independence Air to serve destinations in Florida, the Midwest and the West Coast. The A319s also will be fitted with leather interiors in a single class configuration, and feature over 20 channels of live satellite TV in every seatback.

All the J-41 turboprop aircraft will be retired as they exit the United Express program, since Independence Air will operate an all-jet fleet.

The “preview” website for Independence Air is available now at FLYi.com. On the day the company officially announces its destinations and low-fare pricing, customers will immediately be able to begin making reservations directly on the website.

Web visitors who sign up for membership to the iCLUB will receive additional information about Independence Air services, and be offered the opportunity to take advantage of special offers and promotions that will be made available only to members.

Atlantic Coast Airlines currently operates as Delta Connection and United Express in the Eastern and Midwestern United States as well as Canada.

The company has a fleet of 142 aircraft—including a total of 120 regional jets—and offers 800 daily departures, serving over 80 destinations. The company employs approximately 4,100 aviation professionals.

For more information about Atlantic Coast Airlines Holdings, Inc., please visit our website at www.atlanticcoast.com. For more information about Independence Air, please visit our “preview” site at www.flyi.com.


---------

Dulles, VA, (April 5, 2004) – Independence Air and parent company Atlantic Coast Airlines Holdings, Inc. (Nasdaq: ACAI) today announced the launch sequence for its long-awaited new low-fare service that will feature over 300 daily departures from Washington Dulles International Airport this summer—making it the largest low-fare hub in America.

In May, Independence Air will hold a nationwide satellite news conference and launch celebration from Washington, DC. This kickoff event will be broadcast live on the internet, and will be available to media outlets across the country. On that date, Independence Air will unveil additional details of its launch plan to the public, including:

  • The destinations Independence Air will serve starting this summer

  • The low-fare pricing and simple, hassle-free travel experience

  • The convenient schedule of frequent departures to/from each destination

  • The opening of its FLYi.com reservations website for customer bookings

  • The exact start dates of service to the Independence Air destinations


  • Low-fare service to Independence Air’s new destinations will begin this summer based on the agreed transition schedule of its jet aircraft still in service with United Airlines, as reported in a separate release issued earlier today. The inaugural Independence Air flights are scheduled for June 16th, and more will be added throughout July, August and September—quickly building up to over 300 daily departures this summer.

    Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Kerry Skeen said, “This is it! Independence Air is ready for takeoff this summer, and we couldn’t be more excited. Over the past few months, thousands of travelers in the Washington/Northern Virginia area and communities across the country have told us they are thrilled to hear about a new low-fare service that will make air travel faster and easier—and we will finally answer that demand in May when Independence Air is officially open for business.”

    Independence Air service will be provided using a fleet of over 110 jet aircraft fitted with new slimline leather seats, including at least 25 new 132-passenger Airbus 319s with over 20 channels of live satellite TV available at every seat. The Airbus planes—which are scheduled to launch in November—will allow Independence Air to offer coast-to-coast low-fare service to additional destinations in Florida, the Midwest and West Coast.

    The “preview” website for Independence Air is available now at www.FLYi.com. Web visitors who sign up for membership to the iCLUB will receive additional information about Independence Air services, and be offered the opportunity to take advantage of special offers and promotions available only to members.

    For more information about Atlantic Coast Airlines Holdings, Inc., please visit our website at www.atlanticcoast.com.



    Now we just need the city list.  Big grin


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    [Edited 2004-04-05 17:55:13]
    We got planes! We got gates! What the hell!
     
    desertjets
    Posts: 7603
    Joined: Fri Feb 18, 2000 3:12 pm

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Tue Apr 06, 2004 1:27 am

    This is going to prove to be very interesting. Given the relatively short time frame from start-up to first flight they have to have a pretty impressive marketing plan to get the seats filled.

    The other question is what gates are they going to be using at IAD. Their current digs in C are not set up very well for CRJs and has no space for the Buses.


    But on the other hand, it might be more interesting to see how United fills the void that ACA leaves. They do around 350 flights a day at Dulles. I think it will be pretty messy to fill that in, with everybody and their mother that flies a regional jet and 30 seat turboprops flying under the United Express banner.
    Stop drop and roll will not save you in hell. --- seen on a church marque in rural Virginia
     
    scottysair
    Posts: 6442
    Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2000 4:07 pm

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Tue Apr 06, 2004 1:27 am

    Can you anyone tell me which one of those cities will served out of IAD flights?
     
    AA623BDLSJU
    Posts: 346
    Joined: Sat Aug 16, 2003 2:16 am

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Tue Apr 06, 2004 1:44 am

    Not trying to be a smart ass, but it is for sure that IAD is one of them.

    Hopefully really, really, really, truly, very soon we'll know the other 49 cities.
     
    copaair737
    Posts: 3571
    Joined: Sat Aug 30, 2003 5:00 am

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Tue Apr 06, 2004 2:10 am

    I would say some at least 3 cities in the far west/west coast (SFO, LAX, LAS), and probably some Florida cities, like FLL, TPA, RSW. Maybe MSY in Louisiana, and There will probably be some regional routes, like CLE, LGA/JFK, BOS, CLT. Those are some of my guesses, the other routes, your guess is as good as mine.

    -Copa
    Livin' on Reds, Vitamin C, and Cocaine
     
    freshlove1
    Posts: 1245
    Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2004 1:38 pm

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Tue Apr 06, 2004 2:19 am

    looks good for Independence Air to get off the ground,but what is DL going to do with all those routes that were flown by ACA with the FRJ's???. According to the pilot contract,it prohibits contract carrier codeshare arrangements with domestic carriers such as ACA if the contract carrier operates aircraft with 70 or more seats, any agreements with the carrier will be dropped immediatly. Will ASA or COMAIR take over these routes??
     
    FlyPNS1
    Posts: 5310
    Joined: Wed Dec 01, 1999 7:12 am

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Tue Apr 06, 2004 3:15 am

    That's a good question, Freshlove. So far, DL hasn't made a decision..at least publicly. However, there are a few possibilities.

    1) DL asks the pilots for an exemption so that ACA can keep operating the FRJ's for DL Connection.

    2) DL moves the FRJ's to a wholly-owned carrier like ASA or Comair.

    3) DL moves the FRJ's to a contract carrier with FRJ experience...SkyWay being the only really option here.

    4) DL sells the FRJ's and just takes the hit...replacing them with CRJ's/ERJ's.

    5) Similar to (4), DL gets a deal with Bombardier to sell the FRJ's to Bombardier, in exchange for another big CRJ order by DL.

    6) DL negotiates with the mainline pilots to fly the FRJ's and fills the FRJ's with currently furloughed DL pilots. In exchange, the DL pilots give up pay and work rules.

    Which of these options comes true??? I don't know.

    Good luck to Independence Air, you're going to need it. I'd love to see the Indy CRJ planes flying IAD-PNS. I'd be willing to reduce my DL flying just to support Indy on that route.



     
    flyguy1
    Posts: 1661
    Joined: Wed Jun 23, 1999 9:45 am

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Tue Apr 06, 2004 3:33 am

    Does this mean IAD will be getting 200 or so new flights this summer? With the existing ACA service becoming Independence air, and all of the new UA express carriers, seems IAD will sure be expanding rapidly.
    727, L1011, MD80, A300, 777-200, 737-300, 737-700, 747-400, 757-200, 737-800, A320. E190, E135, 767-200, CRJ9
     
    jetbluefan1
    Posts: 2913
    Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2003 8:39 am

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Tue Apr 06, 2004 5:52 am

    The A319s also will be fitted with leather interiors in a single class configuration, and feature over 20 channels of live satellite TV in every seatback.

    Can you say, "JetBlue imitator?"

    I'm sure JetBlue will have a fit once they enter the IAD-FLL, SoCal, and Bay Area markets. But it will more or less be a make it or brake it thing for UA, IMO, since they don't have much LCC competition on many of their routes from Dulles.

    JetBluefan1
     
    SHUPirate1
    Posts: 3428
    Joined: Sat Sep 20, 2003 2:53 pm

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Tue Apr 06, 2004 6:09 am

    Just out of curiousity, how many 190's could fit in each of the CRJ A-"gates" at IAD...surely, jetBlue and their 190's could replace Indy there once they go bankrupt, as I find it difficult to believe that they can make this work...
    Burma's constitutional referendum options: A. Yes, B. Go to Insein Prison!
     
    Guest

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Tue Apr 06, 2004 6:18 am

    Jacksonville is one of the start cities, according to the ACA folks here. They've been told they'll get a two week paid vacation in the lull between UAX and I-Air. ACA/I-Air is keeping the current UAX gates as they are the owners. United Express will operate out of an old gate in a presently closed-off section of the terminal with Delta Global Services as the handling agent.
     
    elal106
    Posts: 939
    Joined: Mon Jan 10, 2000 1:50 pm

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Tue Apr 06, 2004 7:03 am

    Here is a list of the cities they are considering:
    Albany, NY
    Allentown, PA
    Atlanta, GA
    Austin, TX
    Bangor, ME
    Birmingham, AL
    Boston, MA
    Buffalo, NY
    Burlington, VT
    Charleston, SC
    Charleston, WV
    Charlotte, NC
    Chicago, IL
    Cincinnati, OH
    Cleveland, OH
    Columbia, SC
    Columbus, OH
    Dallas, TX
    Dayton, OH
    Daytona Beach, FL
    Denver, CO
    Fort Lauderdale, FL
    Fort Myers, FL
    Gainesville, FL
    Grand Rapids, MI
    Greensboro, NC
    Greenville/Spartanburg, SC
    Halifax, NS Canada
    Harrisburg, PA
    Hartford, CT
    Houston, TX
    Huntsville, AL
    Indianapolis, IN
    Jacksonville, FL
    Kansas City, MO
    Knoxville, TN
    Lansing, MI
    Las Vegas, NV
    Lexington, KY
    Los Angeles, CA
    Louisville, KY
    Manchester, NH
    Melbourne, FL
    Memphis, TN
    Miami, FL
    Milwaukee, WI
    Minneapolis, MN
    Montreal, Canada
    Myrtle Beach, SC
    Nashville, TN
    New Haven, CT
    New Orleans, LA
    Newark, NJ
    Newport News, VA
    Norfolk, VA
    New York, NY
    Orlando Sanford, FL
    Orlando, FL
    Ottawa, Canada
    Pensacola, FL
    Phoenix, AZ
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Portland, ME
    Portland, OR
    Providence, RI
    Raleigh-Durham, NC
    Richmond, VA
    Roanoke, VA
    Rochester, NY
    Sacramento, CA
    Saginaw, MI
    Salt Lake City, UT
    San Antonio, TX
    San Diego, CA
    San Francisco, CA
    Sarasota, FL
    Savannah/Hilton Head
    Seattle, WA
    Stewart/Newburgh, NY
    St. Louis, MO
    Syracuse, NY
    Tallahassee, FL
    Tampa, FL
    Toronto, Canada
    Trenton, NJ
    Tucson, AZ
    Washington Dulles, VA
    West Palm Beach, FL
    White Plains, NY
    Wilmington, NC
     
    JaxFlyI
    Posts: 21
    Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2004 10:19 am

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Thu Apr 08, 2004 5:12 pm

    The final list of cities to be served is still not ready but i can tell you that some of the cities served out of IAD will be JAX,ATL,PWM,CHS,EWR and ORD to name a few, more will come in later weeks as our plan is finalized.I have received word that the first flights will start on June 16 but our first flight out of JAX wont be until mid July.Rumor around company is that the first flight will be to ATL.I heard that this week they will be having open house in ATL,EWR and one more city to get people hired for start up.Our last flight in JAX as UAX will be MAY 19th...YIPPIE!!!!...good bye ORD flow control!!!!
     
    potomac
    Posts: 692
    Joined: Sat Jul 26, 2003 5:06 am

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Thu Apr 08, 2004 9:05 pm

    just to clarify, IAir will be operating out of the existing A terminal gates (which ACA owns), which are "walk-up" gates (no bridges or covered walkways from terminal to plane). they work fine for junkstreams and CRJs i suppose, though not if the weather isnt favorable for a 50 foot walk. ACA also has 3 (i think) gates at the adjacent B terminal, no doubt where the airbus aircraft will go. IAD is rebuilding the T gates (attached to the main terminal), replacing the "construction sheds" that are there now and converting them to permanent facilities. i'm pretty sure ACA owns some/most of these, and i think these gates will be able to handle narrow-bodies.

    UA will be operating its express operations exclusively out of the C and D concourses (no more connecting across the tarmac to A to T). some flights will leave directly from gates on C and D, though most will be based at the new F terminal, being built on the new ramp south of C and D that will ultimately also be where the permanent C/D concourse will be built down the road. this operation will be similar to express ops in LAX, where buses will take pax from C and D to the F terminal, and they'll board directly from there.
     
    Leskova
    Posts: 5547
    Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 3:39 pm

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Thu Apr 08, 2004 9:07 pm

    With a name like Independence Air, I would have expected to see a launching of services on 4th of July - or 2 weeks and 4 days later than the now official launch: I'd guess that that could have been perfect for a PR-campaign...

    Happy contrails,
    Frank
    Smile - it confuses people!
     
    voodoo
    Posts: 1974
    Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2001 12:14 am

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Thu Apr 08, 2004 9:11 pm

    They can just say "Independence Day is coming early this year"
    ` Yeaah! Baade 152! Trabi of the Sky! '
     
    Mikey711MN
    Posts: 1233
    Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2003 4:19 am

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Thu Apr 08, 2004 10:03 pm

    For those of you who are interested in what might happen to the DL Connection FRJ service, check out this thread and this press release from the considering airline. Frankly, I'm a bit surprised, although nothing is apparently final yet.
    I plan on living forever. So far, so good...
     
    DCA-ROCguy
    Posts: 3934
    Joined: Fri Apr 21, 2000 5:03 am

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Fri Apr 09, 2004 3:42 am

    The Rochester paper reported that Independence Air was in town asking for gate space in March. They told our airport manager that ROC is on their short list and that they want to start with around 6-8 dailies. That schedule seems a bit optimistic to me, 4-5 might be better to start (UAX flies 3 CRJ's/ one Junkstream now). Interestingly, the ROC airport manager made a point of noting how happy he was that Indy Air did not ask for subsidy of any kind.

    Indy must be very confident. As much as I want them to succeed, it still isn't clear to me how they're going to run RJ's on LCC fares.

    Jim
    Need a new airline paint scheme? Better call Saul! (Bass that is)
     
    JaxFlyI
    Posts: 21
    Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2004 10:19 am

    RE: Independence Air Starts June 16th!

    Fri Apr 09, 2004 5:38 am

    To respond to what Potomac said about no jetways or covered walk ways in the A gates at IAD.ACA has recently agreed to spend nearly 10 million dollars on upgrades on A and B councourses at IAD and one of them includes covered walkways for the A gates.

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