SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KTIV) -
SIOUX CITY (KTIV) - For a few years now, there has only been one airline flying out of the Sioux Gateway Airport.
But as of bright and early Friday morning, all of that is going to change.
Frontier Airlines begins service to Sioux Gateway Airport, for a second time, with Friday morning's 6:40 departure.
Frontier Airlines first served Sioux Gateway Airport in 2007 and 2008. But, the airline left while reorganizing under Chapter 11 Bankruptcy. Now, the airline is back, bringing passengers to Denver. Officials say the response from Siouxland's travelers has been excellent.
"They've indicated to us that they're very pleased with the numbers, and that the numbers are on par with some of their top markets serving Denver," Dave Bernstein, President of the Airport Board of Trustees said.
Community business leaders say the addition of an airline with a western connection, rather than American Eagle's service to Chicago, is huge in developing Siouxland's business potential.
"It makes it easier for travelers, whether you're in Sioux City or whether you want to come to Sioux City, to get in and out. That only helps a community be more vibrant and furthers our business expansions," Barbara Sloniker, Executive Vice President for the Siouxland Chamber of Commerce said.
Not only is there a broader range of travel options close to home, but the airport experience just may be that much more pleasant.
"There's no question. Sioux City is the easiest airport in the country to fly in and out of," Bernstein said.
But, Airport Director Curt Miller warns that travelers should be prepared for a bit more of a wait than they're used to at the Sioux Gateway Airport, due to the increase of traffic in the morning. And, because Frontier is a low cost carrier, there are some pay-as-you-go options that may be confusing. But...
"As you buy your ticket, it'll explain them while you check in. It'll also let you check your bags and save money if you do it online instead of bringing them to the airport," Miller said.
While flight prices of course, will vary, airport officials do say that if you plan far enough in advance, there are very good deals to be had.
The flights are available Monday Wednesday and Friday, but tickets are almost sold out for flights in June.
Miller says it's a good idea to buy tickets sooner, rather than later.
An airline is preparing to spread its wings in Sioux City, again.
Frontier will fly passengers from Sioux City, to Denver, for the first time since it left town in 2008.
Airport employees are busy preparing for the flight, which will arrive Thursday night at Sioux Gateway Airport.
With the exception of the seven months Frontier Airlines served Sioux Gateway Airport in 2007 and 2008, Sioux City has relied on just one airline for several years now.
But, bright and early Friday morning, all of that will change.
"This is great. We've been working a long time toward getting additional service. This really compliments our existing service to Chicago," said Curt Miller, Sioux Gateway Airport Director. Miller says he's not the only one excited. He says ticket sales have been great, meaning the community must be excited, too.
"We know that 95% of the seats are full right now through June. Looking out at the traffic that's going, 71% of those people are actually flying to Denver as their destination," said Miller.
Community business leaders say the airport is huge in selling the Siouxland area to potential economic development prospects, and they're sure that Frontier's addition will help their case."When we meet with prospective businesses that are trying to locate in our area, that's a lot of what they ask about. What is the air service like, how can I get in and out, get my suppliers in and out, get those people I need to meet with. So it's a very definite added bonus for all of us," Barbara Sloniker, Executive Vice President for the Siouxland Chamber of Commerce said.
Now Siouxland's passengers can access both coasts, with all the convenience of a smaller airport."It's a very user-friendly airport, it's a very easy airport. The terminal is brand new, very clean, very quiet, very comfortable. So we just want to make it a very user-friendly experience in this day and age, when travel can be very cumbersome," said Dave Bernstein, President of the Airport Board of Trustees.
With all of this, will come a few changes. The airport will now have two flights boarding at the same time on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, so Miller says to make sure you plan ahead to be there early, and if possible, check out the extra carry-on fees, and even check in to your flight on their website beforehand."Instead of 50 people boarding an aircraft, we're going to have 188 people, all trying to get through ticket lines and security lines. So people need to show up early, and get here earlier than they're used to, because the lines are going to be longer," Miller said.
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