WASHINGTON, D.C. – As the first Southwest Airlines flight departs from Dayton International Airport to Denver, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown marked the expanded service and more affordable options for Miami Valley travelers. Southwest’s move to DAY has already created more than 20 jobs and connects the Miami Valley to Southwest’s nationwide network—increasing affordable flight options—and complimenting AirTran’s existing service.
“This first Southwest Airlines flight marks increased and affordable flight options for the Miami Valley,” Brown said. “Miami Valley businesses and families have another great option for high-quality, reasonably-priced service at DAY.”
Brown is working to ensure that Miami Valley families and businesses have access to affordable flights from DAY. Following a call from Brown, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) awarded funding for improvements and safety updates at DAY. Following news that Delta would limit service for Miami Valley business travelers after the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) approved a waiver request made by U.S. Airways and Delta Airlines, Brown urged the Administration to ensure that direct service is maintained from DAY to New York LaGuardia Airport. In a letter to U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Sec. Ray LaHood, Brown said that eliminating Dayton’s current direct flights to LaGuardia puts the Dayton business community at a disadvantage compared to cities that have direct access to New York’s business center.
In October 2011, DOT approved a slot swap at Washington’s Reagan National Airport (DCA) and New York’s LaGuardia Airport (LGA), allowing Delta to expand service into LGA and U.S. Airways to expand service into DCA. Before DOT approved the deal, both airlines guaranteed that their existing service in mid-sized cities, like Dayton, would not be negatively affected. Although DAY’s three daily flights to LaGuardia are currently 74 percent full, Delta announced plans to eliminate direct service from DAY to LGA beginning in July. Delta will instead direct Miami Valley business travelers to John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), a less convenient commute for business travelers.