Sun Country Airlines, a Minnesota-based low-cost carrier, will become the 11th major passenger airline at St. Louis Lambert International Airport this fall, with service to Tampa and Fort Myers.
Starting Oct. 3, the airline will begin nonstop service from St. Louis to Fort Myers, with flights departing on Wednesdays and Saturdays. On Nov. 1, it will begin service to Tampa, with flights departing on Thursdays and Sundays.
In addition to St. Louis, the airline also announced new routes from Dallas/Fort Worth and Madison, Wisconsin. Sun Country currently serves 37 markets in the U.S., Mexico and the Caribbean.
“Most of our 36-year history has been about connecting the communities of Minneapolis-St. Paul to warm, sunny destinations,” said Brian Davis, a senior vice president at Sun Country Airlines. “This is a big step for us, to export our service to other communities like St. Louis.”
Airport officials say Sun Country will be good for consumers.
“We’re thrilled to be part of their launch for scheduled nonstop service to and from St. Louis,” Lambert Airport Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge said. “The addition of Sun Country gives our travelers even more options to two popular Florida destinations.”
Sun Country is the second carrier this year to begin operations at Lambert. Iceland-based Wow Air began service in May.
“The industry is watching what is happening here,” said Hamm-Niebruegge when asked about the significance of another airline landing at Lambert. “We’re seeing some good things overall in the economy and in the region, and the airlines are responding to that. So a new carrier coming into this market is a pretty significant milestone.”
Hamm-Niebruegge said the addition of Wow Air contributed to the airport’s recent growth in passenger traffic. With more than 250 daily departures to 71 destinations, Lambert served more than six million passengers from January to May this year, up 5.2 percent over the first five months of 2017.
Sun Country carried 2.4 million Twin Cities passengers last year, according to the airline.
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