Durango to Los Angeles flight to end Sept. 1

Thursday, Aug. 23, 2018 5:34 PM
American Eagle will end its summer Saturday flight from Durango to Los Angeles on Sept. 1.

Seasonal Durango to Los Angeles flights offered Saturdays will end Sept. 1, and there are no plans to increase their frequency or to extend them beyond the summer.

Nichelle Tait, a spokeswoman with American Airlines, said the airline does not release passenger numbers on a particular flight, and no plans exist to extend the run for the flight, which is under the American Eagle regional brand.

Tait said several factors are examined in changing or adding to a flight schedule, including market conditions, aircraft availability and network flight patterns.

“Durango is no exception” to this analysis, she said.

American Eagle seasonal flights to LA started June 9 for the third consecutive year.

Tony Vicari, director of aviation for Durango-La Plata County Airport, said, “We continue to engage American Airlines about expanding the season and frequency. Strong local use of DRO will go a long way in showing the ability of our market to support additional air service.

The airport is not always given passenger numbers by airlines, he said.

The route is currently offered on Saturdays because it is traditionally the slowest travel day for airlines.

“Saturday is low tide in terms of passengers,” Vicari said. “That means carriers will look to pull an aircraft off an established route and test it on a new market then.”

For summer 2018, the airport recorded a 1.3 percent increase in June passenger traffic, and a 1.1 percent increase in July compared with 2017.

“I certainly view this as encouraging given that this growth occurred during the peak of the 416 Fire’s impacts to our community, Vicari said in an email.