You'll still be able to fly direct from Springfield's Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport to southwest Florida this winter starting November 6th. Allegiant Air is picking up service to Punta Gorda. Allegiant's Eric Fletcher says this is a good way to re-enter the Springfield market.
"We're confident we can make this work for a number of reasons," says Fletcher. "First off, it's a great community. There's a huge connection between Springfield and the southwest Florida market. It's been proven by other airlines flying this specific route to this specific airport we're flying to."
The new air service was made possible through a $250,000 federal grant awarded earlier this month. Executive Director Mark Hanna says there is no direct revenue guarantee or payment to Allegiant, the agreement all falls under the federal grant. Under the two day per week schedule, the current grant money could last three years. But he says if Allegiant decides to add additional flights, it can and the grant would cover them, but the grant money would run out more quickly.
Allegiant flew out of Springfield to Las Vegas in 2007, but Fletcher says they had to exit because of fuel costs. Allegiant will start the flights twice a week on Tuesday and Thursday. It will fly a MD 80, 166 seater plane and the introductory rate will be 92-99, one way.
(posted 2:57 p.m. 08/22/2012 by Alex Degman/Michelle Eccles)