United Airlines appears ready to come to Columbia
COLUMBIA — United Airlines flight schedules posted to its website Saturday night showed two new flights out of Columbia Regional Airport.
Passengers can book United Airlines service to Chicago O'Hare Airport beginning Aug 1. Passengers can also book flights to Denver starting Aug. 2.
Neither United Airlines nor Columbia Regional Airport have confirmed that United Airlines will begin service to Columbia.
KOMU 8 News reached out to both United Airlines and interim Airport Manager Mike Parks Saturday evening, but neither had responded Saturday night.
The city of Columbia has a news conference scheduled for Monday morning to "make an announcement regarding" the airport.
United Airlines would be a new airline for Columbia, which has operated exclusively with American Airlines since Frontier Airlines left in May 2013.
United flights to and from Columbia would appear to include morning departures to Chicago O'Hare and Denver, and a second, afternoon departure to Chicago.
American Airlines currently operates flights to Chicago and Dallas. Chicago would be the only route out of Columbia where two airlines directly compete.
Passenger traffic at Columbia Regional Airport has trended steadily upward since 2007.
KOMU 8 News spoke with Parks Wednesday for a story about the airport's planned improvements.
When asked about the possibility of a new airline starting service to Columbia, he said, "The airport is always looking at other air carriers, looking at other destinations, and additional routes which people submit and request."
The city's news conference about the airport is expected to start at 10 a.m. Monday.