Southern Tier residents will soon be able to book a nonstop flight from Binghamton to a pair of popular destinations in Florida, Orlando and Fort Myers.
Avelo Airlines announced Wednesday that it will start flying out of Greater Binghamton Airport beginning Nov. 16, offering introductory one-way fares starting at $79 for flights between BGM and Orlando International Airport and Fort Myers’ Southwest Florida International Airport.
Binghamton is the first New York destination in Avelo’s US network. The company took flight in April 2021 and has since flown more than one million customers on more than 8,500 flights.
“Southern Tier residents can now choose from two sun-soaked nonstop destinations — Orlando and Florida’s majestic Gulf Coast,” said Avelo Airlines Chairman and CEO Andrew Levy. “Say hello to convenient and cost-friendly hometown airport access to the Sunshine State and say goodbye to long and expensive gas-guzzling drives to those other distant New York airports.”
Non-stop Florida flights address a longtime need
Once a busy travel center in the Town of Maine, the Greater Binghamton Airport’s flight calendar includes only one arrival and one departure per day, to and from Detroit via Delta. Travelers then connect with other domestic and international flights from the Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport .
Mark Heefner, the airport’s Commissioner of Aviation, said service to Florida has been requested by the community for over 20 years.
“Our partnership with Avelo not only addresses that need but lays the foundation for successful service for years to come,” said Heefner. “A lot of hard work went into this announcement, and we are humbled and grateful for Avelo’s faith in our community. ”
The new routes at BGM will operate twice weekly, using Boeing 737 jets, which are larger than the regional aircraft Delta operates at BGM.
Every Avelo flight is nonstop. The company says it has a year-to-date flight cancellation rate of 1%, checked bag handling performance rate of .09 mishandled bags per 100 bags.
“We’ve been working very hard to obtain additional air service at the Greater Binghamton Airport,” said Dan Reynolds, Chairman of the Broome County Legislature. “Residents are eager to have a direct flight option to Florida, and we’re excited that Avelo Airlines is able to provide this service to our community.”
Binghamton airport aims to be a more competitive option
Avelo will serve 31 destinations across the US after adding its presence in Binghamton. The company said at least one airport on every Avelo flight is a small hometown airport as it focuses on “flying unserved routes to primarily underserved communities across the country.”
The addition of Avelo flights may make BGM more competitive with other airports in the region that offer daily flights to multiple destinations. Neighboring airports include Ithaca Tompkins International Airport and the Elmira Corning Regional Airport.
The Ithaca airport offers flights to and from Detroit, Philadelphia and Newark via Delta, American and United.
The Elmira airport offers flights to and from Detroit and St. Petersburg-Clearwater via Delta and Allegiant.
The Greater Binghamton Airport has received millions of dollars in federal funding in recent years for upgrades, including $6.5 million in 2019 to build a new taxiway by rehabilitating and connecting two existing taxiways, and $11.9 million in 2017 for a runway reconstruction project.
Earlier this month, Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand announced over $2.2 million to fund the reconstruction of airfield guidance signs and the reconstruction or replacement of the airport lighting vault.