Originally Posted by boi2socal
Delta is going back to five flights to SLC beginning in July, while also using smaller aircraft. Passenger counts seem to still be going down at the airport. I guess people aren't traveling out of Boise much now even though other things tend to be turning around.
American Eagle is adding service to Eugene and Redmond/Bend as well.
Yep, bummer news about Delta, but their summer schedules are still flexible at this point. Wouldn't surprise me to see continued adjustments here and there. Regarding American Eagle to Eugene/Redmond - those are gov't subsidized routes which have no current air service so it's no surprise to see them venture into that market. AA has little to lose and it could help them gain market share in Oregon where they are exceptionally weak.
Also, now that American and US Airways are merging, it means that if American wanted to re-enter the LAX-BOI market, it would be much easier and more cost efficient as they don't have to worry about opening a new station. It wouldn't surprise me if American gradually closed the low-yielding and redundant Phoenix hub and shifted all of that traffic to Boise-Los Angeles and Boise-Dallas/Ft. Worth. Service to California/Texas would be preferable to the local economy over the current 3x daily nonstops to Phoenix.
Two bits of news from the April commission meeting. To counter the drop in service, the Boise Airport is moving ahead with an air service incentive program with landing fee credits, marketing incentives, and public outreach campaigns to attract new air service. The requirements for these landing fee credits and other incentives is that the new service must operate for a minimum of one year, and there must be a minimum of 2 weekly departures to qualify.
The goal is to minimize risks and challenges associated with adding new service, and will help Boise recruit airline service to these key markets:
New York City
Of those cities, I think by far the two most likely are Chicago Midway (Southwest) and San Diego (Alaska/Horizon or Alaska/SkyWest). As stated above I also think American to Dallas/Ft. Worth service is inevitable, but it will come at the expense of service to Phoenix (which is fine because that market will still be served by Southwest).
Atlanta and New York are long shots. Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. I don't see happening in the forseeable future. But I think it's a great program and the airport is taking all the right steps they can to counter the loss in service and competition.
Also, for now the airport has decided not to move forward with the consolidated and expanded air cargo facilities at the Southeast end of the airport due to the decline in air cargo tonnage (not just in Boise but throughout the US). Initially the target date to consolidate air cargo was 2013-2017, but unless the US air cargo market picks up I reckon that will likely be pushed back into the 2020s. The airport will focus on promoting use of the Boise customs port for in-bond clearance of international shipments. Unfortunate, as I was excited to see the new cargo facilities get built, but I fully understand their rationale.