The largest airliners are wide-body jets. These aircraft are frequently called twin-aisle aircraft because they generally have two separate aisles running from the front to the back of the passenger cabin. These aircraft are usually used for long-haul flights between airline hubs and major cities with many passengers.
A smaller, more common class of airliners is the narrow-body or single aisle aircraft. These smaller airliners are generally used for short to medium-distance flights with fewer passengers than their wide-body counterparts.
Regional airliners typically seat fewer than 100 passengers and may be powered by turbofans or turboprops. These airliners are the non-mainline counterparts to the larger aircraft operated by the major carriers, legacy carriers, and flag carriers and are used to feed traffic into the large airline hubs. These regional routes then form the spokes of a hub-and-spoke air transport model.
The lightest (light aircraft, list of light transport aircraft) of short haul regional feeder airliner type aircraft that carry 19 or fewer passenger seats are called commuter aircraft, commuterliners, feederliners, and air taxis, depending on their size, engines, how they are marketed, region of the world, and seating configurations. The Beechcraft 1900, for example, has only 19 seats.
When the Wright brothers made the world’s first sustained heavier-than-air flight, they laid the foundation for what would become a major transport industry. Their flight in 1903 was just 11 years before what is often defined as the world’s first airliner. These airliners would have a significant impact on global society, economics, and politics.