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Old 04-09-2013, 01:50 PM
 
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As you may know Frontier is starting flights from Wilmington Airport in a few weeks. When they made the decision to fly from Trenton airport they immediately cancelled domestic flights from ABE and PHL (still fly internationally from PHL).

Allegiant slightly increase service from ABE-SFB to make up for the loss of their competition to Orlando, but it will only replace a small fraction of the passengers. In turn Frontier carried far fewer passengers than AirTran.

Do you think that they will do the same thing with MDT airport?
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Old 04-09-2013, 04:51 PM
 
Location: Midwest transplant
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Hard to tell since MDT can't get the airlines to lower their prices to the competitive market of BWI, PHL or even EWR. It's a shame because the proximity of MDT to so many potential travelers is there, but when you are saving over 1/2 of a ticket price to drive to one of the larger airports, even with the cost of time/tolls and parking~it often comes out to significantly less money. Plus, there are more options for direct flights or rescheduling cancelled flights at the larger airports. If you can't get out of MDT on time to make your connecting flight, you are s-t-u-c-k.
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Old 04-14-2013, 11:55 AM
 
Location: Better half of PA
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I just scored a roundtrip ticket to Phoenix out of HIA for 328 dollars including tax. I could have gotten it for about 270 but the days I wanted to travel weren't offered at that lower price. Bargains can be had but they are hard to find some times.

I didn't even check BWI or PHL.........maybe I should have but I doubt the price would have warranted to hassle, although sometimes it does for sure.
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Old 04-15-2013, 12:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by teachbeach View Post
Hard to tell since MDT can't get the airlines to lower their prices to the competitive market of BWI, PHL or even EWR.
Pricing is so arbitrary that it is difficult to say anything that is true all the time. At times it is cheaper to fly out of ABE to Philadelphia and then board a second plane to some destination than it is just to drive to Philadelphia and park at your own expense and get on the plane directly to your final destination.

United Airlines charters a bus from ABE to Newark which can be booked just like a plane flight. Once again it is usually only slightly more expensive, and often cheaper to book the bus to Newark then to drive there yourself and pay parking. The only downside is there is often a 2-3 hour layover.

To many people it is worth up to an extra $40 to fly out of their local airport and reduce the hassles. Especially if someone is dropping you off and wants to use the car while you are gone.
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Old 04-15-2013, 12:46 PM
 
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Isn't their a grant involved for the MDT-DEN service?

For someone in Malvern, Coatesville and Downington, MDT was quite a hike but possibly doable for a low fare. But if there are closer options in ILG and TTN, MDT might not be supported by that crowd.

MDT though is really for Harrisburg-Lebanon-Lancaster-York region however, so any pull from the western suburbs of Philly or Reading was a bonus.

I could see Frontier interested in Hagerstown (HGR). HGR is within one hour of areas like Gaithersburg, MD, a suburb in the DC market. It could add MCO/Orlando, TPA/Tampa and MDW/Chicago services, while DCA keeps the DEN service. I think it'll pass on FLL with Spirit and Southwest battling it out at BWI on low fares already.

If the grant is still there though on MDT-DEN, it might keep Frontier at MDT, with the Orlando services as well. It might not add more flights at MDT, if greater interest is to be within one hour of Philly, DC and/or NYC suburbs. But if the current service at MDT is doing well, maybe it's worth adding more service there-likely TPA and maybe even MYR or FLL could be done.

Last edited by avg12; 04-15-2013 at 01:05 PM..
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Old 04-16-2013, 11:03 PM
 
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Originally Posted by avg12 View Post
Isn't their a grant involved for the MDT-DEN service? If the grant is still there though on MDT-DEN, it might keep Frontier at MDT, with the Orlando services as well. It might not add more flights at MDT, if greater interest is to be within one hour of Philly, DC and/or NYC suburbs. But if the current service at MDT is doing well, maybe it's worth adding more service there-likely TPA and maybe even MYR or FLL could be done.
It looks like you are correct, they did get a grant for this route, but it only comes for one year. I wonder why ABE never has gotten one of these grants.

Small Community Air Service Development Program (SCASDP) Grant Selections by Fiscal Year
2002 Reading - $470,000
2003 Erie - $500,000
2004 Dubois - $400,000
2004 Latrobe - $600,000
2004 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton - $625,000
2005 Bradford - $220,000
2005 Williamsport - $500,000
2006 Harrisburg - $400,000
2007 PADOT - $400,000
2008 State College - $474,000
2011 Harrisburg - $500,000
2011 Latrobe- $200,000
2012 Williamsport- $500,000
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Old 04-17-2013, 09:55 AM
 
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To be honest, I'm curious how ILG will do. I don't think ILG-IAH and ILG-DEN are sustainable, but maybe I'm wrong. DEN has connections though but it's a long flight still. From that aspect, hopefully ILG-DEN won't dilute sales of MDT-DEN as well. Offering MDT-DEN daily would have made more sense since it's MDT's most west flight and there is less competition in the MDT area than at ILG/PHL.

From the Wilmington/Philly area to reach the west coast, there is still Virgin America which competes against US and United. So, why stop and change planes in DEN, when it's cheap to fly nonstop all the way.

I do like that Frontier offers DirecTV but it's not complimentary like it's how it's offered on JetBlue (not that JetBlue really matters here, since most of their services are out of JFK and BOS).

Hopefully the ILG-Florida works and ILG-MDW for Frontier. I was surprised it didn't offer ATL.

If Southwest pulls out of the PHL-ATL route (currently flown by AirTran), I could easily see Frontier adding ILG-ATL. Most business passengers from the Philadelphia side will support US Airways (or American after merger), while Atlanta based customers will support Delta, leaving Southwest as a third weel relying a lot on connections, rather than more profitable business pax O&D. Leisure pax will get screwed and there will be higher fares on PHL-ATL nonstop, making Frontier's alternative airport/ low frequency but low fares more enticing to that crowd.

Last edited by avg12; 04-17-2013 at 10:04 AM..
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Old 05-16-2013, 06:31 PM
 
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Isn't the Frontier flight to Denver only in the summer ?

I think it would make more sense for MDT to focus on being a regional airport. I don't think flying to somewhere like Denver has staying power here. Not enough people want to fly from Harrisburg to Denver to make that sensible.

People will use MDT to fly to regional cities, or to fly to regional hubs in order to then get a longer flight somewhere else.

Most of the flights out of MDT make sense. The flight to Denver does not. And it would not be a big loss for MDT to lose that flight.
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