I was reading in the USA Today (believe it was Tuesday) that "ATA is now the 10th largest airline in the US," and that they are now bigger than Alaska.
I really can't figure where USA Today got this idea. I've also heard this same comment about ATA being bigger than AS on this very forum, perhaps a few months ago. Still, it just doesn't make sense.
At least to my knowlege, Alaska is considered the 10th largest carrier, and they easily surpass ATA in terms of revenue, available seat miles, cargo, and number of passengers, and probably in about every respect I can think of.
Through September, ATA has carried about 6,125,000 pax, while AS has carried about 10,300,000. The AS number is not including Horizon Air.
I know that the ATA orders for 757s and 738s, coupled with much needed renovations at Midway will help ATA maintain a very healthy growth-rate. But, I don't see how they could be considered the 10th largest airline with their present operations. I didn't bother to check Air Tran, but I would imagine they're near ATA in terms of passengers as well.
Any insight would be appreciated.