Columbia In Negotiations For Flights to Dallas and Chicago

6 years 4 months 1 week ago Friday, March 09 2012 Mar 9, 2012 Friday, March 09, 2012 2:02:00 PM CST March 09, 2012 in News
By: Emily Spain

COLUMBIA - Columbia Mayor Bob McDavid said Friday the city is in negotiations with multiple airlines for nonstop flights from Columbia Regional Airport to Dallas and Chicago. This comes one week after the airport announced a non-stop flight to Atlanta starting June 7. McDavid said the city has made a pitch and has consultants helping with the deals. Currently Delta is the sole provider of flights coming in and out of the airport.

"I am very confident that we will have other destinations," McDavid said. "You really have to be aggressive and that's what we're going to do."

He said the city does not know an exact timeline for when it will confirm flights to Dallas and Chicago. He said the city could get a phone call from an airline anytime.

"If we're not successful, it's not because we aren't trying," he said.

The announcement about the additional flight to Atlanta continues to get positive reviews from passengers, but not everyone is excited about adding even more flights like what McDavid is promoting.

"I want us to be careful as a community as to how many different locations we connect to because that will impact price, availability and access," passenger Linda Bennett said. Bennett said she has been using the airport since the Delta connections to Memphis got started.

Delta would not release ticket sales to Atlanta since the city made the announcement. But Delta spokesman Trebor Banstetter said the airline has sold tickets. He added ticket prices often reflect the level of demand. Price for round-trip tickets during most Mizzou SEC football games are around $300. But for the MU home game versus Georgia, ticket prices are more than $500. Banstetter said Delta would not have added the Atlanta connection to Columbia's airport if the airline didn't think it would be successful.

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