American Airlines opened and abandoned a hub in Raleigh-Durham in the 1990s and it and Southwest Airlines have been fighting for control of North Carolina’s second-busiest airport ever since. But now Delta Air Lines is challenging the status quo with flights to five new cities and more service on three of its existing RDU routes. Beginning November 1, Delta and its commuter partners will launch two daily flights to Hartford, Connecticut; three daily flights to Orlando; two daily flights to Tampa; two daily flights to St. Louis and daily flights to Columbus, Ohio. Delta will also add one daily flight to three airports: its Minneapolis-St. Paul hub; its New York/Kennedy hub; and Boston/Logan.
Remember that proposed Delta-US Airways deal where the two carriers would swap assets at New York/LaGuardia and Washington/National? After it was effectively killed by the Transportation Department during summer, Delta announced a slew of new flights from the gates at National that it retained. And now US Airways is adding new flights from LaGuardia using the gates that it tried to trade to Delta. On October 31, US Airways begins commuter flights to seven cities from LGA. Only two routes–Hartford and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania–do not already have service from other airlines.
Frontier Airlines will move its flights between Milwaukee and Tampa International (TPA) to St. Petersburg/Clearwater International (PIE) beginning November 18.
Joe Brancatelli is editor and publisher of JoeSentMe.com, a non-commercial Web site for business travelers. Copyright 2010 by Joe Brancatelli. Licensed by contract for Orbitz use.