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This is the official blog of the City of Lakeland, Florida. Check back frequently to stay up to date with all that going on in our beautiful city!

Direct Air Announces Non Stop Service between Four Cities and the “Orlando West” region through Lakeland Linder Regional Airport

Lakeland, Florida  – March 30th, 2011 – Direct Air, an air service with corporate headquarters located in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina announced today it will begin providing non-stop jet service between four cities to Lakeland Linder Regional Airport and the following markets beginning June 23rd, 2011: Niagara Falls-Buffalo, New York (serving greater Toronto, Canada); Myrtle Beach, South Carolina; Hagerstown, Maryland; and Springfield, Illinois. 

As part of the opening celebration, Direct Air is offering passengers flying between these new markets a special introductory fare of “$79 for 79 Hours”.  This promotion begins with the press conference on Wednesday, March 30th and will end Saturday, April 2nd at midnight. Reservations can be booked at or by calling Direct Air’s Reservations Department at 1-877-432-3473.

Lakeland Airport Director Gene Conrad reported Direct Air will begin providing service with 10 flights per week. The schedule will offer Thursday and Sunday flights between Hagerstown and Lakeland and also flights between Myrtle Beach and Lakeland.  On Friday, Saturday, and Monday, nonstop flights will be offered between Lakeland and Niagara Falls NY /Toronto  and also between Lakeland and Springfield, Ill .

Conrad continued by saying, “What a tremendous opportunity this new partnership between Direct Air and the Lakeland Linder Regional Airport presents for Polk County and the City of Lakeland.  We have made tremendous strides to prepare our airport facility for an opportunity like this and Direct Air recognizes the potential of this airport  because of its central location in the heart of Florida.  We look forward to the Lakeland Linder Regional Airport serving as a gateway for visitors to our region and a convenient travel option for our local residents.”

Kay Ellison, Managing Partner of Direct Air said “We are incredibly excited to be basing an aircraft in Lakeland and expanding our presence in Central Florida.  We want to be known as the “go-to” air service for nonstop flights and low fares to Florida. We believe a long and very successful partnership with Lakeland Linder Regional Airport and the surrounding community will develop quickly as we work together to accomplish our common goals.”

Judy Tull, CEO of Direct Air said “Direct Air has built a strong niche service developing underserved markets offering convenient service via smaller, secondary airports as an alternative to high fares and lengthy travel times at big airports. The Lakeland Region is attractive to our business model and philosophy because of its strategic location situated between Orlando in Central Florida, and Tampa / St. Petersburg on Florida’s west coast. Our passengers will find it as an economical alternative to the busy and stressful larger airports in Orlando and Tampa."

Direct Air President Ed Warneck commented by saying, “The partners of Direct Air all agree that we will be a vital component in expanding and growing the Orlando West region of Central Florida.  Direct Air projects a $33,462,000.00 annual economic impact based on a conservative 75% per cent load factor will flow into the Central Florida / Lakeland region from the 1,200 inbound seats per week, totaling 62,400 inbound passenger seats per year. It is Direct Air’s goal to grow the market through increased frequency and adding new destinations as we have done in our other markets.”

Direct Air has been offering non-stop and direct jet flight service since 2007.   The company is pleased to add Lakeland, FL, and Hagerstown, MD to its current markets:  Myrtle Beach, S.C.; Pittsburgh, Pa. ; Newark, N.J.; Niagara Falls, N.Y.; Columbus, Oh.; Plattsburgh, N.Y.; Toledo, Oh.; Kalamazoo, Mich.; Worcester, Mass.; Allentown, Pa.; Rockford, Ill.; Springfield, Ill.; Melbourne, Fla.; Orlando-Sanford, Fla.; Punta Gorda, Fla., and West Palm Beach, Fla.  All Direct Air flights are public charters operated on Boeing 737-400, 150 passenger jet aircraft by Sky King Airlines featuring 12 First Class and 138 coach leather seating.  Direct Air is excited to be flying its one-millionth passenger in 2011.

Airfares are one way beginning at $99 each way and increase in increments based on availability. First Class seats are available for a $100 upgrade each way. Seat assignments in advance require a $10 purchase per person. There is an additional charge for baggage and surcharges may apply for excess/overweight checked baggage.  A convenience fee of $15 each way will be accessed. Air fares do not include Federal Segment Fee of $3.50 per segment (A segment is defined as one take off and one landing), Passenger Facility Charges (PFC) up to $4.50 and September 11th Security Fee of $3.70 per departure.

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Direct Air Media Relations

Kelsey Dunn
(843) 916-9700


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