One of Jackson Hole Airport’s two major airlines that has leaned on soon-departing SkyWest Airlines to manage its ground operations has named a replacement contractor.

United Airlines is going with an in-house subsidiary called United Ground Express, and several jobs at Jackson Hole Airport were posted online Monday. United Ground Express leadership is also meeting with SkyWest employees on airport grounds Wednesday to share information about the company, travel benefits and pay.

SkyWest Airlines announced it would be ceasing its contract with United and Delta airlines in March, news that shook dozens of longtime employees, including some people who had worked many years trying to secure “lifetime” flight benefits.

SkyWest representatives reasoned that the Jackson Hole Airport ground operations contract no longer made business sense. The Utah-based regional airline is continuing to fly regional jets out of the valley that operate under the names Delta Connection, United Express and American Eagle, though its activity has sagged as mainline jets have become the standard.

Delta Air Lines, which flies more seats into Jackson Hole than any other airline, has not yet identified a new vendor, corporate communications specialist Ashton Kang told the Jackson Hole Daily on Monday.

The SkyWest contract expires on Sept. 4.

Contact Mike Koshmrl at 732-7067 or

Mike has reported on the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem's wildlife, wildlands and the agencies that manage them for 7 years. A native Minnesotan, he arrived in the West to study environmental journalism at the University of Colorado.

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