Holiday Rush: Airlines Are Adding New Flights and Resuming Others at Pittsburgh International

Holiday travel at PIT is expected to be at 91% of pre-pandemic levels.
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Yes, it was a tough travel summer because of flight delays and airline staff shortages. But that isn’t deterring local travelers from kicking up their plans for the coming holiday season.

Pittsburgh International Airport is adding new flights and resuming others as it prepares for its busiest travel season of the year. By December, the airport carriers are expected to be operating at nearly 91% of pre-pandemic levels, according to Blue Sky News, the airport’s news service.

Among new flights, JetBlue will be introducing its new Airbus A220-300 on its Boston route on three of four daily flights starting Oct. 30. This plane adds 40 seats per flight and offers larger overhead bins and windows than are typically designed.

For Florida destinations, Frontier will resume seasonal service to Orlando on Nov. 7, with two flights a week, Mondays and Fridays. Also on Nov. 7, Spirit will resume nonstop daily flights to Fort Myers and Tampa.

Airlines also are resuming flights to destinations in Texas and Arizona. Southwest will offer Saturday-only nonstop service to Houston-Hobby Airport beginning Nov. 12, and seasonal service to Austin on Nov. 22.

American will restart daily service to Phoenix-Sky Harbor Airport from PIT on Dec. 1 with its 196-seat Airbus A321neo. This route will continue through mid-January and then American will pick it up again in February.

Other routes that have returned this year or will offer more capacity this winter compared with last winter include United Airlines to San Francisco, Alaska Airlines to Seattle, British Airways to London Heathrow and a new flight, Spirit to Newark, New Jersey.

This month, total seats offered by PIT carriers are 86% of pre-pandemic levels. Travel experts say that even though leisure travel is leading airline activity, business travel is coming back. They also noted that there are more “blended” trips; because more people can work remotely, they are extending their time at vacation destinations. This is creating new travel patterns.

Categories: The 412