Frontier Airlines returning to Will Rogers

By Brian Brus

The Journal Record


OKLAHOMA CITY – Frontier Airlines is returning to Oklahoma City after a two-and-a-half-year absence with daily flights to its Denver headquarters hub.


Airports Director Mark Kranenburg said Tuesday that Frontier has also committed to flights out of Will Rogers World Airport to Orlando, Florida, and San Diego, California. The details of Frontier’s investment in Oklahoma City are still being worked out, he said, but the company appears to be interested in staying at Will Rogers well into 2018.


The Denver route is scheduled to begin Nov. 1, as is the Orlando route, although the latter will operate only Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. The San Diego route will begin in the spring.


“San Diego is an airport destination that we’ve been pitching to carriers for some time,” he said. “I’m really delighted that they’ll start next spring. The data we’ve collected suggests a lot of Oklahoma passengers are interested in going to San Diego.


“That’s what we try to do: find service holes throughout the United States to fill. But you’ve also got to make sure there’s enough of a market demand to justify the use,” he said. “We are always working with our consultant to find recruitment opportunities as well as enhancement.”


The announcement is part of a larger campaign in which Frontier is entering 21 cities and adding 85 new routes with promises of lower fares.


Frontier was one of the first airlines to operate out of Oklahoma City, Kranenburg said. Its cancellation of service in early 2015 was due to other changes in the carrier’s routes that included major job cuts in Denver as well as a $1 billion contract for new Airbus jets.


The reintroduction will not require any construction or realignments at the airport, he said. Will Rogers has one vacant gate remaining. An inspection tour of the facility was planned with executives Tuesday afternoon.


Will Rogers’ total enplanements for the year to date are up 3 percent compared with 2016. June’s passenger traffic increased by 7 percent; March increased by 8 percent.