Las Vegas-based Allegiant Air has created a different model than major airlines, allowing it to thrive in Eugene and elsewhere.
One of every five passengers flying in or out of Eugene flies on Allegiant.
The airport lost almost 25 percent of its capacity in 2008 when fuel costs skyrocketed, airport Manager Tim Doll said. “We were able to make it through the recession when Allegiant came in and added capacity into the market — we were getting low-fare service, additional routes throughout the downturn. It helped us attract new passengers, helped us keep passengers who were driving up to Portland and, once a year, they added a route.”
This month, Allegiant will add two new routes, with direct flights to Palm Springs, Calif., starting Nov. 15 and direct flights to Honolulu starting Nov. 17.
“Never in my wildest dreams did I think we would get nonstop Hawaii service out of Eugene — we’re just not that type of market,” Doll said.
Read more at The Register-Guard.