LOS ANGELES, CA – Piggybacking on a favorable reception at LAX from customers and investors, MetroAir announced it will begin nonstop service to eight new destinations and place additional frequencies on three existing routes. Cities receiving new flights are Seattle, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Denver, Dallas, Houston, and Atlanta. Additional flights will be added to Kansas City, Chicago-O’Hare, and Baltimore.
With the additional flights, MetroAir hopes to provide greater flexibility to customers in the Southern California area by giving them the option of flying to either LAX or Ontario.
“The LAX station is very much O&D focused right now,” stated Chief Operations Officer William Hogarth, “LA is the second largest metropolitan area in the country and we are hoping to capitalize on that by flying to the destinations with the highest demand.”
The aforementioned flights will begin on these dates (frequencies in parentheses):
Atlanta (2x daily) – 8/5
Baltimore (+1x daily) – 8/5
Chicago-O’Hare (+1x daily) – 8/5
Denver (2x daily) – 8/5
Dallas-Ft. Worth (2x daily) – 8/11
Houston (1x daily) – 8/15
Las Vegas (5x daily) – 8/15
Kansas City (+1x daily) – 8/5
Phoenix (2x daily) – 8/11
Sans Francisco (3x daily) – 8/11
Seattle (3x daily) – 8/11
MetroAir began serving LAX in May and has seen success with service to five cities. Within the next month, MetroAir Virtual will be flying to 13 domestic destinations from LAX while maintaining their hub in Ontario. Throughout the first two months of operations at LAX, reports indicate average load factors above 86% with introductory ticket fares. For comparison, the United States average domestic load factor was 83.8%. While load factors do not equate to profitability, Hogarth implied that the outlook for LAX is positive.
“We have been focused on cutting or downsizing flights that have given us trouble and are constantly reevaluating our highest earning markets,” said Chief Executive Officer Matt Calsada , “It’s very gratifying to see such growth in our Southern California operations. After almost 9 years of serving the Inland Empire, we’re ecstatic to see that there is a demand for our services at LAX.”
At the start of the second quarter, MetroAir began scaling back operations in some areas in order to focus their efforts elsewhere. These reductions saw cities such as Laredo, TX, Erie, PA, and Billings, MT lose mainline service. Furthermore, other budgetary cuts around the country have included the suspension of Essential Air Service routes. After many of the government subsidies were cut, the routes became unprofitable and the decision was made to end service. Due to underutilization, MetroAir plans to park five Bombardier Dash 8 Q200 aicraft in storage and will sublease six Bombardier Dash 8 Q400 aircraft to Horizon Airlines.
“While reaching every corner of the globe is our eventual goal for MetroAir, we can’t spread ourselves too thin or else we won’t be able to compete financially,” spoke Director of Route Development Zak Winnick, “Unfortnuately, some markets will gain flights at the expense of others.”