ACA Reports Fourth Quarter

Atlantic Coast Airlines Holdings, Inc. , parent of Atlantic Coast Airlines
(ACA), today reported annual net income of $82.8 million ($1.82 per
diluted share) compared to 2002 net income of $39.3 million ($0.85 per
diluted share) in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles
(GAAP). The company`s net income for 2003 includes:

—Credits from the reversal of the J-41 turboprop early retirement
charges recorded in prior years net of early retirement charges for
aircraft removed from service in the fourth quarter of 2003—Costs
related to the company`s defense of a hostile takeover bid—A reduction
in a reserve taken in 2001 to correct deficiencies of the company`s 401(k)
plan—Government compensation relating to the events of September 11,
2001

Excluding these charges and credits, the company would have reported net
income of $70.5 million ($1.55 per diluted share) compared to $53.9
million ($1.17 per diluted share) for 2002. A reconciliation of results as
reported in accordance with GAAP to pro-forma results for 2003 and 2002 is
included in the Pro-Forma Financial Results table at the end of this press
release.

For the fourth quarter 2003, the company reported net income of $13.7
million (30 cents per diluted share) compared to a net loss of $(1.0)
million (2 cents per diluted share) in 2002. The results for the fourth
quarter of 2003 include the following charges and credits not related to
normal operations:
—A reduction of the estimated effective tax rate for 2003 from 41% to
38.8%—Early retirement costs related to three J-41 turboprops—Costs
related to the company`s defense of a hostile takeover bid—A reduction
in a reserve taken in 2001 to correct deficiencies of the company`s 401(k)
plan
Excluding these charges and credits net income would have been $21.0
million (46 cents per diluted share) compared to $12.5 million (28 cents
per diluted share) for the fourth quarter of 2002. A reconciliation of
results as reported in accordance with GAAP to pro-forma results for both
2003 and 2002 is included at the end of this press release in the table
entitled “Pro-Forma Financial Results”.

Atlantic Coast Airlines currently operates as United Express and Delta
Connection in the Eastern and Midwestern United States as well as Canada.
On July 28, 2003, the company announced plans to operate as Independence
Air—an independent low-fare airline based at Washington Dulles
International Airport—once it ceases to operate as a United Express
carrier.
The company continues to report excellent progress toward the
implementation of its Independence Air business plan. While the timing of
the transition schedule that would lead to the completion of ACA`s
participation in the United Express program remains in the hands of United
Airlines and the bankruptcy court, much of the planning and infrastructure
for the operation and marketing of Independence Air is well along in
development. Among the elements now being finalized:

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—The transition of ground-handling operations at ACA`s Chicago O`Hare
hub to United Express operator Air Wisconsin is nearly complete. This
process—which has been underway since late last year—is expected to
be completed by the end of February.—Station operations and
ground-handling at six former ACA line stations that are not expected to
be served by Independence Air have now been transitioned to United Express
operator SkyWest.—The route plan, flight schedule, fare structure,
ticketing policies and other customer service programs are substantially
complete and will be announced prior to initial Independence Air
operations.—A comprehensive marketing, public relations and advertising
plan is nearing completion. The company is planning to make significant
expenditures in the first year of Independence Air operations on a full
schedule of print, broadcast and online advertising in the Washington, DC
metropolitan area and across the country. The campaign is being designed
to promote the Independence Air brand and to introduce the public to a
compelling new choice for low-fare air travel.—A new Independence Air
service training plan, as well as new-hire orientation and re-orientation
programs for existing employees are well underway.—The selection of an
in-flight entertainment system for the previously- ordered 25 Airbus A320s
and A319s will be announced shortly.
Once fully implemented, the Independence Air hub at Washington Dulles will
be the largest low-fare hub in America, with over 350 daily departures to
50 destinations on the East Coast, Florida, the Midwest and West Coast.
Service will be provided using a fleet of over 100 jets, including the
Airbus aircraft and the fast, convenient CRJ.

The “preview” website for Independence Air is available now at
http://www.flyi.com/. Once an official start date for service is
announced, customers will be able to make reservations directly on the
site. Web visitors who sign up for membership to the i club will receive
additional information about Independence Air services, and be offered the
opportunity to take advantage of special offers and promotions available
only to members.

The company has a fleet of 145 aircraft—including a total of 120
regional jets—and offers over 840 daily departures, serving 84
destinations. The company employs approximately 4,400 aviation
professionals.

For more information about Atlantic Coast Airlines Holdings, Inc., please
visit our website at http://www.atlanticcoast.com/. For more information
about Independence Air, please visit our “preview” site at
http://www.flyi.com/.

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