MONTOURSVILLE, LYCOMING COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) – Williamsport Regional Airport is adding flights to Charlotte, North Carolina. The airport previously only offered flights to Philadelphia.
The change is a result of an analysis of the destinations travelers in the market use.
It’s a year of new beginnings for the Williamsport Regional Airport. Most travelers fly in and out of Philadelphia. Now, soon there will be a direct flight to Charlotte starting in August.
Richard Howell, Executive Director of the Williamsport Regional Airport tells us,
“It enhances the ability of our people who travel out of this airport. Charlotte goes to over two dozen destinations that our studies have found our customers go to.”
Currently, local travelers have to go to Harrisburg to get to Charlotte. Now, not only are they adding the North Carolina run, but, a new dual class airplane will also be brought on board as well.
“That was just like gravy for the goose were just really excited about that there’s a lot of American Airlines frequent flyers that can take advantage of that,” Howell said.
Flyers are enthused.
Matthew Rinaldi said, “It would definitely add more business to the area because it would have more tourists maybe compared to only coming in from Philly.”
Tammy Switzer and her husband are leaving today for a cruise to the Bahamas.
“Im going to Philly today. Instead of going up and basically back down I can go all the way to Charlotte. It’s a different hub it’s a farther flight and I think it would be more convenient for this area,” Tammy said.
It could be an uphill battle for the airport in maintaining the Charlotte stop. To maintain this route, executive director Richard Howell tells us he’s looking for 60,000 passengers annually from Williamsport to Charlotte. Last year, there were only 40,000 to and from Philadelphia.
“It’s a little bit of a challenge. Our studies have also demonstrated we have those passengers. Howell added. “They’re just going to other airports so we need people to start coming back to our airport.”
It’s a challenge he’s accepted in marketing the Williamsport Regional Airport.
And with only one flight a day… Tammy Switzer says “I think you would have to have the two flights especially if you’re going to go to two different ports.”
You may remember, we told you about flight reductions in the beginning of the month with only one flight a day to and from the airport. Eyewitness News has learned a second flight will return on May 6th.
And with the addition of the Charlotte hub… Howell tells us he’s hoping to actually have multiple flights a day, year round.