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Delta Airlines to leave Durango-La Plata County Airport on Nov. 1

Airline says it didn’t have enough passengers to justify flights
Tony Vicari, aviation director of Durango-La Plata County Airport, greets passengers arriving May 12 from Salt Lake City. Delta plans to discontinue its twice-daily flights to DRO beginning Nov. 1. (Courtesy of BCI Media)

Delta Airlines is packing up and departing Durango-La Plata County Airport after servicing the region for less than half a year.

The reason: There wasn’t enough demand to justify staying in the area, according to Delta’s flight operator, SkyWest Airlines.

“SkyWest expects to discontinue Delta Connection service between Durango La-Plata County Airport and Salt Lake City International Airport on Nov. 1,” said a SkyWest spokesperson in a written statement. “We appreciate the support we have seen from the community; however, there is not enough sustainable demand to continue offering these flights. We apologize to customers for the inconvenience and those who have booked travel through Durango beyond Nov. 1 will be contacted to make alternative arrangements.”

Delta Airlines, which Aviation Director Tony Vicari said accounts for 9% of the airport’s traffic, is planned to discontinue flights starting Nov. 1. It began offering flights in mid-May. The flights started as daily, with one departure and arrival seven days per week. But by the end of the month, flight frequency increased to two daily departures and arrivals seven days per week. Flight frequency will drop back to one a day for the month of October, Vicari said.

Delta’s proposal for servicing DRO was presented as a yearlong commitment with no predetermined end date.

Vicari told The Durango Herald that while it is unfortunate Delta will cease service to Durango and La Plata County in November, airport administration is confident the remaining airlines – American, United and Frontier – will be able to meet needs of the community.

Although some of the diversity of flight routes offered through Delta’s connection to Salt Lake City will be lost, Vicari said passengers still have “very robust connection opportunities” through remaining carriers serving hubs in Denver, Dallas and Phoenix.

Vicori said Delta’s departure isn’t expected to impact short- or long-term renovations the airport is considering, and that air traffic to and from the airport is still over 110% of pre-pandemic 2019 figures.

cburney@durangoherald.com

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