Allegiant cancels summer flights between Destin and St. Cloud, Minnesota

EGLIN AFB — Allegiant Air has canceled its remaining summer trip season nonstop flights between St. Cloud, Minnesota, and Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport, in accordance with a July 8 announcement from St. Cloud Regional Airport later confirmed by the airline.

Allegiant started its St. Cloud service to and from the Emerald Coast on June 8, and the service was scheduled to proceed by means of Aug. 15. The route was introduced in February, as Allegiant unveiled 33 different routes from St. Cloud Regional and different airports across the nation to an array of vacationer locations, together with such Florida cities as Destin, Fort Walton Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Key West and Orlando.

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The routes had been introduced because the nation started rising from restrictions associated to the continued coronavirus pandemic. Drew Wells, the airline’s senior vp of income, mentioned on the time that as “summer approaches, we count on a whole lot of pent-up demand for journey, particularly for locations the place individuals can hike, fish, camp or go to the seashore … .”

St. Cloud Regional Airport blamed “struggles to search out workers and crew to deal with the elevated visitors for each Allegiant and Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport” in its assertion on cancellation of the flights.

Allegiant, for its half, famous that a “confluence of things” led to the early suspension of the flights. In explicit, an electronic mail from an airline spokeswoman famous that the “return of leisure journey … has made summer operations at peak occasions extremely tough for Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport … .”

An Allegiant Air jet sits parked at the gate of the Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport in this Daily News file photo.

‘Demand … has been unprecedented’

Okaloosa County Airports Director Tracy Stage mentioned labor shortages are affecting operations throughout the board on the airport, from rental vehicles to baggage dealing with to airport concessions. And consistent with Allegiant’s assertion on the influence of the return of leisure journey, Stage mentioned “pent-up demand has been unprecedented” on the airport. 

“We’re confronted with a whole lot of challenges that a whole lot of different airports which can be vacation spot airports are going through,” he mentioned. “We even had shortages of truck drivers that ship gas.”

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