Williamsport Regional Airport director holds out hope that new airline will come in after American Airlines leaves
The head of the Williamsport Regional Airport remains cautiously optimistic that commercial flights will return sometime after American Airlines flies its last plane out of Williamsport next month.
“A real strong potential exists to get sometHing in here,” Airport Director Richard Howell said this week.
Howell recently met with officials from eight different airlines in a bid to ensure the airport has commercial service.
However, he said he’s not at liberty to reveal the one airline strongly considering the airport.
“We are continuing to work with one,” he said. “There is a remote possibility there will be a provider in October.”
American Airlines is scheduled to end its service with the airport in late September, raising the possibility that the local area will be without commercial service for just a short time.
“We are definitely not going to have something by Oct. 1,” he said. “Maybe later that month.”
Howell was in Florida last week to talk to people from the following airlines: United, SkyWest, Southern Airways, Express, Contour Airlines, Sun Country, Cape Air, Frontier and Allegiant.
He would not disclose which of the airlines are considering the Williamsport market.
“I’m hoping to hear something pretty soon,” he said.
Last month, the airport got word it will receive a $950,000 Small Community Air Service Development grant.
That amount represents the second highest of among the 22 airports receiving such grant money.
The funding stream, Howell said, serves as an enticement for airlines to consider the Williamsport market for flight service.
Howell acknowledged that a spike in COVID-19 infections have already reduced air travel nationwide of late, but is hopeful it will not hinder air traffic over the long term.