University Park Airport will offer nonstop commercial service to and from two locations in Florida starting this fall.
Allegiant Air will operate flights to Orlando Sanford International Airport and the Tampa/St. Petersburg area via St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport. Flights will be offered twice a week for both locations.
“We’re very excited to bring our brand of convenient, friendly service to State College with these two routes, and we’re very grateful for the partnership of Penn State University, as we have worked together over the years to reach this milestone,” Drew Wells, Allegiant vice president of planning and revenue, said in a news release.
Service to Orlando will begin on Oct. 9 and flights will be offered on Wednesdays and Saturdays. St. Pete-Clearwater flights begin Oct. 18 and will be offered on Fridays and Mondays.
Allegiant is offering introductory fares starting at $69 to celebrate the new routes.
"We are excited to welcome Allegiant Air to University Park Airport,” said airport director Bryan Rodgers. “Florida is a high demand market for Central PA travelers and now they’ll have convenient access to an ultra-low-cost carrier, from University Park Airport, providing non-stop service to two Florida destinations, Orlando/Sanford and St. Petersburg/Clearwater/Tampa. We look forward to this new partnership with Allegiant Air.”
James Meyer, Centre County Airport Authority executive director, said the new routes will be on Airbus 319 and Airbus 320, accommodating 150 to 177 passengers, with the four weekly flights adding more than 600 passengers a week departing from University Park Airport.
"Allegiant's faith in our market is now solidified with the announcement of direct service to two new destinations in our number one market, the southeast,” Meyer said. “This has been a long time coming and we are very excited and thrilled to add Allegiant to our list of airlines serving University Park Airport."
In 2018, University Park Airport had more than 151,000 enplanements, or people boarding aircraft, a new record for the airport. Meyer previously said that the airport is on pace to break that record again this year.
University Park Airport currently offers direct commercial flights to Philadelphia, Chicago, Detroit and Washington Dulles. American Airlines recently increased its number of flights per day to Chicago.
A $9 million project that will increase parking and create a new access road at the airport is underway, while a $35 million taxiway rehabilitation project is in the planning stages. Meyer previously said that as the number of flights and passengers continue to grow, the airport authority may consider in the future adding a second floor to the terminal, which would accommodate more travelers, as well as the addition of jetways.