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Business and Economy

Allegiant Adds CIRA Flights To Florida Panhandle

Carl speaks
Jolie Sherman
CIRA Executive Director Carl Olson announces the new Allegiant route to Florida on Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020, in Bloomington.

Allegiant will add its third nonstop route to Florida from Central Illinois Regional Airport (CIRA) in Bloomington starting this summer, officials said Tuesday.

The seasonal service to Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport begins June 4 and will operate every Thursday and Sunday until mid-August.

“The panhandle of Florida has historically been a top leisure destination for Bloomington-Normal and McLean County travelers, especially for families looking to go to the beach and have a family vacation,” said CIRA Executive Director Carl Olson.

“We’re always working on new routes, and the Gulf side of Florida is very popular in Central Illinois. Midwesterns love that part of Florida. We were looking to grow with them (Allegiant) so it was a perfect fit for us,” said CIRA spokesperson Fran Strebing.

The Bloomington airport already offers nonstop Allegiant service to two Florida destinations: St. Pete-Clearwater near Tampa Bay, and Orlando Sanford. Destin-Fort Walton Beach is on the panhandle. (Frontier runs seasonal nonstop service between CIRA and Orlando International Airport.)

“We have never had nonstop service there, so we’re excited for our passengers to be able to explore and find this new destination,” said Strebing.

Special introductory one-way fares are now available for $49.

“I think (Destin-Fort Walton Beach) got very popular because it’s easier to drive there than south Florida, but now with Allegiant service and (introductory) $49 one-way fares, you can fly right down there and be on the beach before you know it,” said Olson.

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