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Editorial: Increased air options wanted
January 10, 2012
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  • As the kinks are being worked out with Monroe’s new Regional Airport Terminal, one fact is certain:

    If you can get there from here, at an affordable price and on a decent schedule, flying from Monroe is a choice consumers will make with their pocketbooks.

    Nothing beats the convenience of being able to arrive a few minutes ahead of boarding call and knowing you’ll be able to check a bag or get through security. Nothing beats the convenience of being able to unload at the front door and step inside almost to your gate. And nothing beats the convenience of parking that’s a few steps away instead of a shuttle bus ride.

    Air traffic in Monroe has increased 21 percent in the past year, and the average fare decreased 6 percent.

    That’s good news for us, because it happened during a time of crisis in that segment of the transportation industry. Airlines facing extreme financial issues trimmed schedules and hiked fares and other costs.

    We’re glad to hear Monroe officials are in the early stages of discussions with Allegiant Air about service here. Particularly with the consolidation of Northwest and Delta and the loss of Memphis as a transportation hub, any additions to the flight schedule will help keep the airport viable as passengers seek good connections for their travel.

    The increase in boardings should help the city with its mission. Certainly key companies in the marketplace could benefit from access to the cities Allegiant serves. (Contrary to popular belief, the airline doesn’t just fly to Las Vegas.)

    You still sometimes get sticker shock when you’re pricing a flight out of Monroe. But comparison shoppers are finding it much harder to get a “deal” from other airports in the region that makes it worth the loss of time and the added expense of driving and parking.

    We’d like to see added service at the new Monroe Regional Airport. We encourage city officials to keep working to expand the offerings here.

    The editorials in this column represent the opinions of The News-Star’s editorial board, composed of President and Publisher David B. Petty, Executive Editor Kathy Spurlock, and community representatives Liz Jones Craft, Mike Riley and Ronnie Traylor.

    Source: Monroe News Star
    Date: 2012-01-10