Aha! Another US Airline Startup Begins Flying

This weekend saw the latest US-based startup airline take to the skies. Based in Nevada, aha! is a brand that regional carrier ExpressJet has launched for its services from Reno to the US’s West Coast states. The brand will eventually serve eight destinations in California, Oregon, and Washington. Let’s take a closer look at this interesting new carrier.

ExpressJet Embraer
aha! will serve its network using Embraer ERJ145s from ExpressJet. Photo: JetLinkAviator via Wikimedia Commons

Inaugural services

Simple Flying first reported around a month ago that an airline by the name of aha! would soon be taking to the skies in the US! The brand, whose name stands for ‘air-hotel-adventure,’ will be used by ExpressJet to establish a base at Reno Tahoe International Airport (RNO) in the state of Nevada. Now, after weeks of excitement, it has finally taken off.

aha!’s inaugural service took place yesterday. The carrier will exclusively serve West Coast states, with the destination for its maiden voyage being Pasco Tri-Cities Airport (PSC) in Washington. According to data from RadarBox.com, flight EV7082 departed at 14:37 local time, and landed at 15:43. ExpressJet CEO Subodh Karnik stated that:

The new nonstop aha! flights to Reno-Tahoe eliminate the hassle of a long drive or multiple airport connections and layovers. Residents can now take a one-to-two-hour nonstop flight and partake of Reno and Tahoe’s bounty, or conduct business, without wasting a whole travel day. Perfect for short spontaneous trips!

EV7082 Map
The journey time from Reno to Pasco is just over an hour. Image: RadarBox.com

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An increasing West Coast presence

aha! has big ambitions for its flights to the US’s West Coast states, and Pasco is the first of eight destinations it will eventually serve. A statement from the airline explains that its second destination will be Bakersfield, California. It is wasting no time expanding its network, with these flights beginning today! On October 31st, it will expand to Medford, Oregon.

Moving into November, aha! will add its remaining five destinations within the first 10 days of the month. The first week will see it add Eugene, Oregon (November 1st), Ontario, California (November 4th), and Redmond, Oregon (November 5th).

Aha! Route Map
aha!’s initial network will be fully up and running by November 10th. Image: aha!

Service to its final two Californian destinations will commence on November 9th (Eureka) and 10th (Fresno). The airline explains that “in the coming months, [it] plans to reach 20 western US cities from Reno-Tahoe.” It will be fascinating to see where it goes next.

Short-term special offer

aha! is celebrating its launch by offering its passengers reduced fares for its first two months of operations. If passengers book by November 15th for flights up until December 23rd, one-way fares can start as low as just $49. Passengers can book these low fares both online and over the phone, although it is worth noting that the latter of these is subject to extra fees.

What do you make of this new startup? Does the idea of flying with aha! tempt you? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

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