Shocker: Frontier Airlines Moves Into Minot, No Subsidies Needed
Earlier this year I wrote a few posts criticizing the the City of Bismarck’s decision, made at the behest of the crony capitalists at the local Chamber of Commerce, to guarantee profits for Frontier Airlines in order to lure their services into the city’s airport. I pointed out that, with demand for air travel services booming across the state, such subsidies were hardly necessary. If there was sufficient demand for air services in Bismarck then Frontier should have moved in on their own steam to supply that demand. If there wasn’t sufficient demand, the taxpayers shouldn’t be on the hook for that risk.
It’s not right to privatize profits but socialize risks. Besides, as soon as Frontier moved in offering flights to Denver, United Airlines which had already been providing those flights dropped their service.
Regardless, yesterday came news that Frontier was going to start providing services here in Minot. Which is great news. I travel frequently, and look forward to having access to their cheap flights. But the thing about Frontier moving into Minot is that there was no special deal for guaranteed profits offered.
Frontier Airlines will begin nonstop flights from Minot to Denver in November, and for those who act quickly, fares are available for as low as $79 each way.
The low fares are available through Saturday on the airline’s website.
“We welcome the low-cost carrier into this very busy market,” said Andrew Solsvig, Minot airport director, in announcing the new flights Wednesday. “I think we can creatively work on some space for them. We have worked with them on scheduling to find a good time that the flight will fit into.”
Flights are scheduled to arrive at 2:05 p.m. and depart at 2:35 p.m. on Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The first flight will be Nov. 5. Frontier initiated nonstop flights between Bismarck and Denver in May and will begin flying Fargo in November.
Frontier’s move into Minot makes good business sense. Airports in North Dakota have been setting all-time records for boardings this year, and the Minot airport (thanks to the oil boom) has become one of the busiest in the state. There is a surplus of demand for air services in Minot, and Frontier is seeking to supply that demand.
That’s how capitalism works. Perhaps the taxpayers in Bismarck didn’t need to be put on the hook for corporate welfare.Tags: bismarck, frontier airlines, minot, North Dakota News