Since 1984 American Airlines‘ regional airline has been named American Eagle Airlines. While most regional airlines are subcontracted by mainline carriers, American Eagle Airlines was wholly owned by American Airlines’ parent corporation AMR, now the American Airlines Group, and served only American Airlines with its fleet of more than 250 regional aircraft.
Now, as American Airlines and U.S. Airways go through the merger process of becoming one brand and one airline, the American Airlines Group has sought to differentiate its regional airline from its mainline airline and other regional carrier serving American Airlines under the American Eagle banner.
To avoid brand confusion, despite the fact that regional airlines are ticketed the same as mainline flights and all contracted regional aircraft carry the livery of the mainline airline, American Eagle Airlines will be rebranded as ‘Envoy’ in the coming months.
Will passengers notice any difference? No, because passengers will still be buying tickets from American Airlines, flying on American Airlines and turning to American Airlines customer service for any issues that may arise … but the name of American Eagle Airlines will be changed to Envoy.
You may be asking yourself, why is this amusing? Well, let me tell you why …
… the name the American Airlines Group has chosen for the rebranding of its regional airline is that of U.S. Airways’ established premium brand. Within the new American Airlines Group, Envoy has been used for U.S Airways’ upper tier lounges and long haul aircraft premium cabin, now that brand recognition of larger seats and a premium passenger experience will be stripped away as the brand name will be swapped for a passenger experience many passengers seek to avoid.
So what’s in a name? Nothing if airline passengers rarely if ever know the brand name of the regional airline they are flying on anyway.