Trans States Airlines

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Trans States Airlines
Trans States Airlines (TSA - Trans States).png
IATA ICAO Callsign
Founded 1982 (as Resort Air)

As American Eagle: LaGuardia Airport (New York)
John F. Kennedy International Airport

As United Express:
Cleveland Hopkins International Airport
O'Hare International Airport
Washington Dulles International Airport
Denver International Airport
Frequent-flyer program AAdvantage
(American Eagle)
Mileage Plus
(United Express)
Airport lounge Admirals Club
(American Eagle)
United Club
(United Airlines)
Alliance Star Alliance (United Express)
Oneworld (American Eagle)
Fleet size 81
Destinations 70
Parent company Trans States Holdings, Inc.
Headquarters Bridgeton, Missouri
Key people Hulas Kanodia (Chairman)
Richard A. Leach
Fred Oxley

Trans States Airlines is the 22nd largest[1] American regional airline. Trans States Airlines, along with Compass Airlines and GoJet Airlines, is owned by Trans States Holdings and is headquartered in Bridgeton, Missouri.[2]

As of 2011, Trans States Airlines employed 650 people throughout North America. The airline currently operates over 240 daily flights in 70 cities as United Express for United Airlines and American Eagle for American Airlines. In total, TSA carried 3.6 million passengers in 2015.[3]


The company began operations as Resort Air in 1982.[4] As an independent commuter air carrier, Resort Air operated Swearingen Metro propjets from a small hub located in St. Louis (STL) with service to Carbondale, Illinois; Columbia, Missouri; Fort Leonard Wood, MO; Joplin, MO; Lake of the Ozarks, MO; Springfield, IL; and Springfield, MO.[5] In 1985, the company entered into an agreement with Trans World Airlines to operate as Trans World Express serving six cities in Missouri and Illinois.

Resort Air changed its name to Trans States Airlines in 1989. That same year, TSA began operations on the west coast as USAir Express at Los Angeles (LAX) and by 1995 was serving Fresno, Monterey, Ontario, CA, Palm Springs, San Diego, San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara nonstop from LAX with British Aerospace BAe Jetstream 31 propjets.[6] By 1999, Trans States was operating BAe Jetstream 31 flights from LAX as US Airways Express nonstop to just four destinations in California: Fresno, Palm Springs, San Diego and Santa Barbara.[7]

On the east coast, in 1995 TSA began operations as a code share feeder airline into New York JFK Airport as United Express.[4] By 1999, Trans States had begun operations as a Delta Connection code share air carrier for Delta Air Lines at New York JFK Airport with Embraer ERJ-145 regional jets and British Aerospace BAe Jetstream 41 propjets with nonstop service to Albany, NY, Baltimore, Greensboro, NC, Hartford/Springfield, Norfolk, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Raleigh/Durham, Richmond, VA and Rochester, NY.[8]

The call sign "Waterski" and the ICAO 3-letter identifier "LOF," which stands for 'Lodge of the Four Seasons', are from the early days when the company was operated as Resort Air and took visitors to the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri.

St. Louis TWA Express Hub Operations in 1990[edit]

Trans States was operating 48-passenger ATR-42 and 19-passenger Fairchild Swearingen Metroliner (Metro III model) propjets in Trans World Express code share service for Trans World Airlines at this time from the TWA hub in St. Louis with nonstop flights to the following destinations:[9]

St. Louis TWA Express Hub Operations in 1995[edit]

By 1995, Trans States had expanded its Trans World Express code sharing operations at the TWA St. Louis hub and was operating ATR-42, ATR-72, British Aerospace BAe Jetstream 31 and BAe Jetstream 41, and Embraer EMB-120 Brasilia turboprops with nonstop flights to the following destinations:[10]

Current Airline Operations[edit]

Trans States Airlines is headquartered in Bridgeton, Missouri where its main training facility and maintenance facility are located. The airline has crew domiciles in Chicago–O'Hare, St. Louis and Washington–Dulles. It operates hubs for United Express in Houston at George Bush Intercontinental Airport, Cleveland at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport and in Washington, DC at Washington Dulles International Airport.[3]

Current Destinations[edit]

An ERJ 145EP at Washington Dulles International Airport

As United Express[edit]

As American Eagle[edit]

United States[edit]


Crew Bases[edit]

  • Chicago-O'Hare
  • Denver
  • St. Louis
  • Washington-Dulles
  • Raleigh–Durham

Current Fleet[edit]

As of June 2016, the Trans State Airlines fleet consists of the following aircraft:[12]

Trans State Airlines Fleet
Type Active Orders Passengers Operated For Notes
Embraer ERJ-145EP/MP 2 50 United Express Being replaced by XR Aircraft
2 Trans States Airlines Spare Aircraft (UAX/AE)
Embraer ERJ-145LR 18[13] American Eagle
Embraer ERJ-145XR 30 United Express Received Aircraft from ExpressJet
Mitsubishi MRJ70 20 76 Deliveries begin in 2018
Total 49 20

In October 2009, Trans States Holdings announced an agreement to purchase 50 Mitsubishi MRJ90 with options for 50 more.[14] Trans States Holdings holds conversion rights to take the smaller, 76-seat MRJ70 instead of the 92-seat MRJ90 dependent on the scope clause environment by the time the airline takes delivery.[15] It has not been announced what subsidiary these aircraft will operate for; Compass, GoJet, or Trans States.

In April 2013, Trans States Airlines began taking delivery of six former Passaredo Linhas Aéreas ERJ-145s.[16]

Previously operated turboprop aircraft[edit]

Prior to becoming an all-jet airline, Trans States operated several different turboprop aircraft types including:

These propjet aircraft were operated in code share feeder services for American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Trans World Airlines (TWA), USAir and US Airways.[17]

Accidents and incidents[edit]

  • July 14, 2004
  • June 16, 2010
    • Trans States Airlines Flight 8050, operated and marketed as a United Express flight, overran the runway at Ottawa Macdonald-Cartier International Airport and sustained damage to the front of the aircraft with a nose gear collapse. Both pilots and one passenger sustained minor injuries.[18]
  • March 1, 2011 at 6:45 am EST
    • A US Airways Embraer 145 operated by Trans States Airlines was being pushed back from the gate at Bradley International Airport for a departure to Pittsburgh when the front nose gear collapsed and the front of the plane dropped to the tarmac. None of the 29 passengers were injured.[19]
  • September 4, 2011
    • Trans States Airlines Flight 3363 originating from Chicago IL, operated as a United Express flight, left the runway during landing at Ottawa Macdonald-Cartier International Airport. The aircraft, with 44 passengers on board, sustained damage to the main gear and belly, as well as to the right wing. There were no injuries to passengers or crew.[20]
  • February 22, 2012
    • Trans States Airlines operating as United Express Flight 3350 originating from Chicago O'Hare,IL to Rochester,NY was on approach to land but overran the end of the runway by about 50–75 feet and came to a stop with all gear off the paved surface. There were no injuries. The passengers disembarked via mobile stairs and were bussed to the terminal.


  1. ^ "Corporate Grouping of Top 50 Regional Airlines". February 2011. Retrieved 2012-10-05. 
  2. ^ "Trans States Airlines :: Corporate Information". Retrieved 2012-10-05.  "Executive Offices Trans States Airlines 11495 Navaid Rd. Suite 340 Bridgeton, Missouri 63044"
  3. ^ a b "Trans States Airlines :: About Our Airline". Retrieved 2012-10-05. 
  4. ^ a b TSA History November 12, 2009
  5. ^, May 1, 1984 Resort Air route map
  6. ^, April 2, 1995 Official Airline Guide (OAG), Los Angeles flight schedules for USAir Express
  7. ^, June 1, 1999 Official Airline Guide (OAG), Los Angeles flight schedules
  8. ^, June 1, 1999 Official Airline Guide (OAG), New York JFK flight schedules
  9. ^, 1990 Trans States Airlines/Trans World Express route map
  10. ^, April 2, 1995 Official Airline Guide (OAG), St. Louis flight schedules
  11. ^ "Trans States (AX) #3331 ✈ FlightAware". FlightAware. 
  12. ^ "Trans State Airlines". Retrieved 2013-12-29. 
  13. ^ "Envoy Fleet of E145 (History) - Airfleets aviation". 
  14. ^ "Trans States Holdings Signs LOI with Mitsubishi Aircraft for Purchase of 100 MRJ Aircraft" (PDF) (Press release). 2009-10-02. Retrieved 2013-06-01. 
  15. ^ "Mitsubishi Specifies Certification Schedule for MRJ". AIN Online. 2013-05-07. Retrieved 2013-06-01. 
  16. ^ "Trans States Airlines takes on six ex-Passaredo ERJ-145s". CH Aviation. 2013-04-26. Retrieved 2013-06-01. 
  17. ^, photos of Trans States Airlines aircraft
  18. ^ Hradecky, Simon. "Accident: Trans States E145 at Ottawa on Jun 16th 2010, runway overrun". Aviation Herald. Retrieved 17 June 2010. 
  19. ^ "Plane Emergency At Bradley". tribunedigital-thecourant. 
  20. ^ "No injuries after plane slides off Ottawa runway". Ottawa. 

External links[edit]