The definition and size of a regional jet is shifting as new and larger models from regional manufacturers are entering the marketplace. The 100-149 seat market, once dominated by the major airframe OEMs, has been invaded by regional aircraft manufacturers, including Bombardier and Embraer. With Airbus and Boeing still participating, albeit relatively unsuccessfully of late, in the 100-149 seat arena, we consider this a “crossover” segment between the regionals and mainline aircraft in our discussions.
The size of regional aircraft has traditionally differed between the US market and international markets, primarily due to scope clauses in pilot contracts with major airlines. In the US, these restrictions govern the size of aircraft that regional affiliates can operate, and have historically restricted regional operations to smaller aircraft than those operated internationally. For example, the Fokker 100, while operated by regional airlines around the world, was operated by major airlines in the US.