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Fayetteville Airport Makes Improvements Before Travelers Take Flight To RDU

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FAYETTEVILLE — RDU International's gain is the Fayetteville Regional Airport's loss. The number of passengers using the regional airport is down, and now officials are working hard to keep travelers from flying the coop.

Dave Hullett and his family are on their way to England. They like to fly out of the Fayetteville airport because it is convenient.

"RDU is further away to drive, more hectic when I go there," Hullett says.

With the number of travelers using the airport down six percent this year, Airport Director Brad Whited hopes others will start taking advantage of the convenience too.

"When you couple all those inconveniences of driving the interstate and I-40, and the traffic congestion and rush hours, parking and so forth, we feel it's an advantage to fly locally," Whited says.

Fayetteville Regional has upgraded its terminal and just finished improving the roads people use to get to the airport. Officials are also trying to upgrade the airport's landscaping and have applied for a state enhancement beautification grant to help get them started.

Officials hope an easy trip to the gate will make travelers pick Fayetteville, even if fares are a little higher.

"As long as they check Fayetteville before they check for Raleigh, they may be surprised at what they'll find," says Dawn Gibson, general manager of AAA Travel.

Some airlines in Fayetteville have matched Southwest's discount fares. For the first time, a cheaper Labor Day fare was available.

The airport is also starting a new marketing campaign next month. The theme: "it's worth the call."

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Melissa Buscher, Reporter
Michael Joyner, Photographer
Julie Moos, Web Editor

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