PLATTSBURGH - There will soon be new service to another Florida destination from Plattsburgh International Airport.
Direct Air and Tours, formerly Myrtle Beach Direct Air and Tours, has announced new one-stop service to Punta Gorda, Fla. In a press conference held at Plattsburgh International Oct. 29, Direct Air chief executive officer Judy Tull stated once-a-week service to and from Charlotte County Airport will begin Saturday, Dec. 6. The new venture is based on success the airline has seen with its existing flights to and from Myrtle Beach, S.C., said Tull, which began in March. That success, she added, has been primarily driven by the number of Quebec tourists who utilize Plattsburgh International as an alternative to larger, more congested airports.
"The response that we have had from your community has been overwhelming," said Tull. "We're very pleased to be in Plattsburgh. It seems like we were just here a few months ago opening up Plattsburgh to Myrtle Beach [service]."
During her flight from Myrtle Beach to make last week's announcement, Tull said she and Direct Air managing partner Kay Ellison had the opportunity to visit with passengers from Montreal who were flying home from their vacation. The passengers, she said, learned about the Plattsburgh-Myrtle Beach flights through friends who had flown Direct Air from Plattsburgh International, and were impressed with the service.
"A lot of these people have already booked flights for the spring to go back to Myrtle Beach," said Tull.
That news is of no surprise to Garry F. Douglas, president of the Plattsburgh-North Country Chamber of Commerce. During the press conference, it was announced the airport expects to see 60,000 enplanements by year's end - an increase 24 times from the last full year of operation at the former Clinton County Airport in 2007, which saw 2,500 enplanements.