AirTran debuts D.C. flight today

Posted on: October 8 2009
AirTran debuts D.C. flight today

N.O. fliers now have 2 nonstops to BWI

Thursday, October 08, 2009

By Ramon Antonio Vargas

Staff writer

New Orleans passengers can take a new nonstop AirTran Airways flight to Baltimore-Washington International Airport starting today, officials said.

The inaugural 2 hour and 25 minute flight leaves Louis Armstrong International Airport -- quite appropriately, perhaps -- at 5:04 p.m., according to airport flight schedules.

The flight will operate every day except Tuesday and Wednesday.

AirTran staff members based in New Orleans have told the airport that the first few flights "are booked heavily," said Michelle Wilcutt, spokeswoman for Armstrong International.

"AirTran wouldn't create this flight if it didn't think there was a market here," she added.

AirTran spokesman Christopher White said the flight to New Orleans was part of a strategy to offer more flights out of BWI, which is about 10 miles south of Baltimore and 30 miles northeast of the nation's capital. The airline plans to add flights from BWI to Nassau and Montego Bay, Jamaica, in December and February, he added.

Previously, Southwest Airlines was the only flight carrier to offer a daily nonstop flight from New Orleans to BWI airport. The seven-day-a-week flight departs at 11:15 a.m.

Southwest used to run two daily nonstop flights there but stopped doing so after Hurricane Katrina decreased flight demands.

AirTran's new offering "brings us back to that level of service to that area," Wilcutt said.

Passengers taking the new flight will fly on a Boeing 717 and can purchase tickets that cost between $199 and $334, according to airline information.

. . . . . . .