12.10.15

SCHUMER: JETBLUE FLIGHTS FROM ALBANY INTERNATIONAL ARE NOW DEPARTING; NON-STOP SERVICE TO FT. LAUDERDALE & ORLANDO BEGINS TODAY; SENATOR FOUGHT TO BRING JETBLUE AFFORDABLE AIR SERVICE & FLIGHTS TO ALBANY

Schumer Pushed Hard To Bring JetBlue To Albany Int’l; Bringing Affordable Air Service To Upstate NY Has Long Been One Of Senator’s Major Priorities

Schumer: The Sky is the Limit When it Comes to the Benefits of New Albany to Florida Direct Flights

U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today announced that non-stop JetBlue flights from Albany International Airport are officially departing to Orlando and Ft. Lauderdale. Schumer previously visited the airport in April to announce these direct flights – which he fought hard to secure – would taking off December 10th. Schumer expressed his optimism that these flights will be the first of many, and that JetBlue’s presence in the Capital Region will boost competition and bring lower-cost flights to area travelers. Today, Schumer said this affordable air service signifies a major win for area residents and businesses, as they will see cheaper flights and more service to Florida. Schumer was an early advocate and pushed hard to bring JetBlue to the Capital Region for 15 years.

“After 15 years of hard work, we can now say that flights from Albany International to Florida are officially departing. I was proud to work with JetBlue to bring their service all around New York State; first to Buffalo, and then to Syracuse and Rochester, each time with great success. Today, the runway is clear for take-off and it is Albany’s turn to taxi towards the finish line,” said Schumer. “This new service will increase competition at the airport, increase options for local travelers, and drive down prices for the average flyer – and just in time for the holidays. It’s a win-win-win across the board that will reap benefits for Albany International, Capital Region residents, and the region’s tourism industry for years to come.”

Last year, Schumer visited Albany International to make the case for another low-cost carrier to establish service at the airport, specifically pushing JetBlue to consider service at Albany. In March 2014, Schumer visited Albany International to announce that JetBlue would establish its first-ever presence in the Capital Region and start daily service at Albany International Airport in 2015. The previous month, in February 2014, Schumer visited the airport to make the case for another low-cost carrier to establish service at the airport, specifically pushing JetBlue to consider service at Albany. Over the past year, Schumer has met and spoken with top JetBlue officials numerous times about Albany as part of his campaign to expand air service in New York State.

Schumer said that bringing in low-cost air carriers will increase both competition and access to flights for Capital Region residents. Now that Schumer has brought JetBlue to Albany, JetBlue will service eight different markets in New York. Schumer also said these JetBlue flights will have the potential to increase tourism, and boost the economy by attracting local restaurants, hotels, shops and more to the area. Schumer said these flights will go each day from Albany to Fort Lauderdale, Hollywood International Airport and back, as well as Albany to Orlando International Airport and back. JetBlue’s introduction to Albany means more flights and an increase in competitiveness that will help drive down prices for all customers and travelers.

Schumer has long fought to bring affordable air travel to Upstate New York and the Albany area in particular. In the past, Schumer successfully fought to bring new airlines and routes to Upstate New York cities, including helping to bring Southwest to Albany and JetBlue to Buffalo, Syracuse and Rochester. Schumer said that JetBlue’s introduction to Albany will now mean more flights and an increase in competitiveness that will help drive down prices for all customers. Furthermore, as prices become more competitive, Albany International will retain more customers; currently, some Capital Region residents travel across state lines to find cheaper flights or preferred routes at airports in Hartford or Boston.    

With the growth of the nanotech industry – specifically chip fabrication – in the Capital Region, the economy is stable and median incomes are high. These factors mean Albany-area residents can afford traveling and will welcome new routes at their local airport. Schumer said that JetBlue’s official plans to begin service at Albany International in December could help attract new companies to the region and further spur the Capital Region’s growing tourism industry. Schumer explained that any increase in tourism has a ripple effect, boosting local restaurants, hotels, shops and much more. The more people coming to Albany, whether they are coming for business, or to visit family and friends, or for Saratoga Race Course, or the Adirondacks for recreation, the more money gets pumped into the local economy and more jobs are supported in the tourism industry.

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