COLUMBIA - The first Frontier Airlines direct flight to Orlando left Columbia Regional Airport at about 4:45 p.m. Tuesday. The plane holds 138 people, and only two seats were empty on the inaugural flight.
Columbia Mayor Bob McDavid and the Columbia Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon cutting ceremony before the plane took off. "I think this will be the beginning of a beautiful friendship," McDavid said to Frontier Airlines Sales Director Andrea Tollar.
"We took a look at Columbia and it's an under-served market. Now you have an opportunity to fly to Orlando on a great low fair," Tollar said. She said the cheapest rate for an Orlando round-trip could be less than $150.
James Martin and his family said they took advantage of this and headed to Disney World. "We decided to get the inaugural flight to Orlando, just because it was a cheaper alternative to Kansas City International Airport," Martin said.
Frontier currently offers a 4:15 p.m. Tuesday flight and a 10:25 a.m. Saturday flight to Orlando. Tollar said the company is considering adding a third flight option in the spring.
Frontier joins American Airlines at Columbia Regional Airport. This comes after Delta Airlines stopped services in early November.