Types of Airlines

Look at any airplane and you can usually identify what airline it belongs to. Most airlines brand their airplanes with their company logo or slogan. If an airplane is unmarked, it may be harder to identify what type of airline it is.

Major Commercial Airlines

Major commercial airlines are passenger airlines that travel either within the United States or to destinations outside of the U.S. Examples of major airlines include American, Delta and United Airlines.

Small Passenger Airlines

Smaller passenger airlines, such as Air Tran and Jet Blue, may offer flights that are limited to certain cities or states.

Cargo Airlines

A cargo airplane is hired to carry freight or mail, according to the Air Transport Association. Cargo airlines include FedEx and the United States Postal Service. Some airlines, like American, offer freight service in addition to passenger flights.

Charter Airlines

Charter airlines allow you to reserve a private plane for travel. These airlines offer a range of small and large jets and some turboprop planes for reservation.

Fallen Airlines

Fallen airlines represent the airlines that are no longer operating, such as Pan Am.

International Airlines

International airlines include those that originate in other countries but travel to international destinations, such as Korean Air or Emirates.