Allegiant expands service, but not at Vienna airport
By Kalea Hall
The only commercial airline offering service at the Youngstown-Warren Regional Airport decided earlier this week to add 17 new routes and service in two new cities, but no route was added in Vienna.
“We knew it was coming,” said Dan Dickten, director of aviation at Youngstown-Warren. “Do I like it? No. But I have no control over that. We continue to go after more service here.”
Youngstown-Warren has nonstop Allegiant Air flights to Orlando, Tampa, Fort Myers and Myrtle Beach.
On Wednesday, the airline added year-round nonstop service from Akron-Canton Regional Airport to Punta Gorda Airport in Florida starting Nov. 6 and will operate twice weekly.
A year-round nonstop service also was added from Pittsburgh International Airport to Orlando Sanford International Airport starting Nov. 5.
To celebrate this expansion of service, the company is offering one-way fares as low as $49 on all of the newly announced routes.
“Akron-Canton and Pittsburgh are new markets to Allegiant, and we found enough demand from travelers to add new routes from those airports,” said Brandon Myers, a public relations specialist for Allegiant, in a statement. “At this time we are focused on the continued success of our current service from Youngstown.”
Dickten has been told that flights added to area airports outside of Youngstown help the local airport in the end. Dickten said the passenger count in Youngstown is up by 4,000 from this time last year.
“Allegiant serves a number of markets that are in close proximity to one another, and it is true that some travelers will choose to fly out of one airport and return to another,” Myers said.
Dickten said he would like to see the airline continue to add destinations for leisure travel. The hope is to pick up routes to Fort Lauderdale and Las Vegas.
“It is slower growth than we thought, but we trust we will have those destinations here soon,” Dickten said. “We look forward to continue growth with Allegiant.”
Allegiant says it has no immediate plans for new routes at Youngstown.
“We’ve been serving the Youngstown-Warren Regional Airport since 2008, and we have been pleased with our service there,” Myers said.
Allegiant is still in labor negotiations through a mediator with the Teamsters. The Federal Aviation Administration stopped the airline for a short time from adding new aircraft and new routes because of the “labor unrest.”
On May 21, Allegiant Air announced it had been approved by the FAA to continue its growth.
“We have no reason to believe that negotiations will affect our scheduled service,” Myers said. “Right now our focus is on reaching a first contract with the Teamsters that will be beneficial to our pilots, our passengers and our business.”
The Youngstown airport continues to support bringing a daily service to Chicago.