Local News

Non-Stop Flights To Florida Scheduled At Fayetteville Airport

Posted September 7, 2006

— Around 300,000 passengers step through Fayetteville's airport each year, compared with roughly 10 million at Raleigh-Durham International Airport. Currently, they can use only a pair of airlines: U.S. Airways and Delta.

For 12 years, Fayetteville has tried to land a third carrier, but officials said they never thought it would be a shoo-in for a low-cost airline serving a high-profile destination.

"We have to don the Mickey Mouse ears," said airport director Brad Whited.

Beginning Nov. 7, Allegiant Air will begin flying to Orlando's Sanford Airport on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. The cost: $49 one-way until Jan. 31, when the price throttles up to $79.

"There's an enormous population that currently doesn't have a low-cost option to get out of town to go on vacation," said Allegiant Air spokeswoman Tyri Squyres. "So for us, this was ideal."

The airport has no numbers on how much of its market is lost to RDU, but airport officials hope more flyers will kick off from Fayetteville.

"We'll get some people driving down from Raleigh, don't you think?" said Whited. "It's convenient, friendly service."

Allegiant will fly Boeing MD-80s, which seat 150 passengers. The airline also announced it will fly out of Kinston's airport direct to Orlando.

The airline specializes in leisure flights to vacation destinations, including Las Vegas. It will begin taking reservations on Sept. 30.

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