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Flint airport to become base for Allegiant Air

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Bishop International Airport
Allegiant Air says it's expanding its operations at Flint's Bishop International Airport.

Allegiant Air said this week that it will expand its operations in Flint. The airline, which currently flies in and out of the airport, said it will base three planes in the city starting next February.

Allegiant said it would spend about $75 million to set up the aircraft and crew base.

Company spokesperson Hilarie Grey said Flint fits the model that’s been working for the airline, which tries to make its flights affordable for a wide array of people.

“Flying out of a smaller airport that’s friendlier and more convenient, like Flint, has been really successful for us, and we want Flint residents to be able to maximize their travel dollars,” Grey said.

Pat Corfman, a spokesperson for Flint’s Bishop Airport, said it’s the largest investment they’ve gotten recently.

Corfman said the airport is small, but it serves a large geographic area.

“When you have an ultra-low-cost carrier like Allegiant in the market, you can pull from a wide swath,” she said. “We actually get people all the way from Sarnia, Canada. We’ve had people all the way from north of the bridge, people as far south as Ann Arbor, down into Toledo.”

Allegiant said basing more planes in Flint means more departures, more often.

“If you are in Flint, and you want to maximize your vacation time in, I don’t know, let’s say Saint Pete, Florida, having that flight that leaves earlier in the morning that gets you to your destination faster means more time for you on the ground,” said Grey.

The airline said expanding its services in Flint will bring new jobs to the city and make it easier for people in mid-Michigan to travel to other parts of the country. Allegiant said it’s also starting a new route from Flint to Phoenix, Arizona this fall.