Gas issues aside, it kills me to hear the vitriol for the lowly-RJ. I worked that plane when they were still the "Darling of the Industry." People PAID good money, significant premiums to be on the ONE flight to city XYZ to be "on a jet" and not a "puddle jumper." We had little plastic tabs (remember those gate signs) that said, "THIS flight on a (in logo font) Regional Jet!"
I'm not saying there's no reason to get rid of them, but make it about costs (the real issue)...not some perceived annoyance with them. I personally never minded the turbo-props...but it was a marketing boon to use a "jet." But for people to say they "miss" the props smacks of saying "I miss the days when a car was built tough...like when I was a kid in the 50's--No air-conditioning, AM
radio, standard transmission, crank-down windows." Props aren't IN AND OF
THEMSELVES "better" just because their NOT RJ
's. There are plenty of crappy things about props--even today. They're not exactly a wide-body bird. You'll gate check your bags. You'll have narrow seats. You'll have modified jetways that take longer to place. You probably don't have FC.
I will acknowledge that the 200's especially, feel more cramped, than the newer -700s and the NextGen a/c. And, the airlines have "over used" them (esp the 200s) on routes that aren't appropriate and missions that don't make sense. But for RJ
"haters" make sure you aren't doing apples to oranges with the PHYSICAL attributes of the planes you're wanting "back" (props) in their place. Keep in mind, Concorde's cabin was scarcely wider than many RJ
's flying today.
Concorde: 8'7"x 6'5"/2.6mx1.95m
Route planning aside, capacity/seats/flights per day, can be a driver in their use. I'm not saying that ECONOMICALLY the RJ
's rarely "make sense" but from a "raw" pax experience, it won't be replaced with a turbo-prop no matter how much cheaper they are or how much people say the "want them back."
My comments/opinions are my own and are not to be construed as the opinion(s) of my employer.