Allegiant Air suspends fall service from Duluth to OrlandoPlanning on taking one of Allegiant Air’s nonstop flights from Duluth to Orlando, Fla., this fall?
By: Candace Renalls, Duluth News Tribune
Planning on taking one of Allegiant Air’s nonstop flights from Duluth to Orlando, Fla., this fall?
You’re probably out of luck.
The airline is suspending its Duluth-Orlando service from Sept. 5 to Nov. 18.
“It’s temporary,” assured Sabrina LoPiccolo, a spokeswoman for the Las Vegas-based carrier. “Basically, it’s not really a peak travel time for that destination. So service is suspended to keep our fares low.”
The suspension has no reflection on the success of the twice-weekly Duluth flights, which are “currently meeting our expectations,” she said.
“It just something they do systemwide,” said Brian Ryks, director of the Duluth Airport Authority. “The service is continuing after they pick it up again in November just prior to the Thanksgiving holidays.”
James Schaff, formerly of Duluth, was surprised to hear the flights would be suspended.
“I hope it is only temporary and not permanent,” he said. “I have made use of the flight three times. Each time I have been happy with their service. It is so nice to have a direct connection from Duluth to Orlando and not have to go through Minneapolis.”
While a flight through Minneapolis would take a day each way, Schaff said he can leave Duluth at 7 a.m. and be in Orlando at 9:35 a.m. and still have the whole day ahead of him.
Duluth isn’t the only market to see Allegiant’s flights temporarily suspended to Orlando-Sanford International Airport. So will Fargo, N.D.; Sioux Falls, S.D.; Appleton, Wis.; Rockford, Ill.; Toledo, Ohio; and McAllen, Texas, LoPiccolo said.
“It’s a slow time,” LoPiccolo said. “There’s not as much demand for flights. Most people are coming back from the summer travel season, getting kids back in school, settling down.”
Allegiant had been providing direct Duluth-Las Vegas flights for nearly four years when it added the nonstop flights to Orlando last November. The service began as the carrier was resuming its Orlando flights systemwide.
“Going into this service, Allegiant made us aware that typically what they do with their Orlando service nationwide is they put it down in September and October when kids are heading back to school, because the demand drops substantially,” Ryks said. “We were aware of that, and that is what they are going to do.”
The suspension does not affect Allegiant’s twice-weekly Las Vegas flights.
The last Duluth-Orlando flights will be on Sept. 4 and flights will resume Nov. 19. During the suspension, plane tickets can still be purchased for when service resumes, LoPiccolo said.