Monday, April 18, 2016

American Airlines brings D.C. direct flights back to Lansing, Michigan

LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Flying can be exhausting. So imagine how hard it might be to set up a route from Lansing to Washington, D.C.

“Throughout a nine month period we let them know that we were not going away,” said Bob Selig, president and CEO of the Capital Region Airport Authority.

He says he constantly checked in with the FAA and Department of Transportation—and he’s not the only one.

“I must have called the secretary of transportation a dozen times,” explained Rep. Mike Bishop, R-MI.

The announcement earned a bipartisan congressional seal of approval and Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce president and CEO, Tim Daman, says with Lansing’s political hub, D.C. is a no brainer.

“It’s the number one business travel destination from Lansing.”

Even if you aren’t looking to visit the White House or pose with Honest Abe, this flight path is good news.

“D.C. isn’t just D.C. There are points beyond D.C. We fly internationally from D.C., we have the shuttle service up and down the east coast out of Washington, D.C.,” explained Mark Tochman, American Airlines’ corporate sales manager.

And even if you aren’t planning to fly at all, Daman says these changes will benefit Lansing’s economy by attracting companies.

“Maybe they’re looking to stay and grow and expand here … Having a quality airport and air service is critical into that equation.”

American hasn’t flown out of Lansing in nearly 16 years and Selig says it’s important to take advantage of the airline’s return.

“We need to get the word out because we haven’t had DC service for six, nine months, use it so that we don’t lose it.”

The flights take off beginning July 5.

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