Mountain resort airports hit turbulance in attempts to grow number of flights, seats


Mike Berland has nearly 9 million frequent flyer miles between United and American Airlines. When you fly that often, convenience is key.

Berland, of Westchester County, N.Y., has a condo in Vail and typically flies a winter nonstop flight to the Eagle County Regional Airport from either Newark, N.J., or John F. Kennedy Airport in Queens, N.Y. The Eagle airport is only convenient, however, when there’s a nonstop service option, he said.

“You can’t count on a connection to Eagle,” Berland said. “When you’re a frequent flyer, you first think about what kind of airplane it is. Big planes are more reliable.”

Berland is one of countless mountain flyers with specific criteria for choosing when and where to fly. Among flyers’ criteria are nonstop service, costs, weather and the size of the aircraft. For some, a two-plus-hour drive to Denver over high mountain passes during a snowstorm is worth it if hundreds of dollars in fare savings are at stake.



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