Aspen loses ski flights

30th July 2010, by Chris Gill

Aspen, Colorado

Aspen, Colorado

According to local reports, Aspen’s local airport will be served by just one airline this winter.

News that Frontier (Republic) and Delta airlines are pulling out of routes to the resort, means that the Colorado ski town will have just one airline in and out of the area – the first time since the early 1990s.

Frontier launched flights to Aspen-Pitkin County Airport from Denver two years ago, and had a profitable share of the market last winter; but the subsidiary of Republic Airlines is cutting back on its fleet of Bombardier Q400 planes, which affects regional flights such as Aspen. By contrast, Delta had a poor season and will cut ski flights to Aspen and to Utah’s Salt Lake City.

So that just leaves United Airlines as the sole operator if you want to get close to Aspen’s slopes, avoiding a drive from Denver. With fewer seats available, prices are likely to rise. But the airline does offer 12 daily connections from Denver, so it is still worth considering if heading for the resort from the UK.

There are approved plans to expand Aspen airport, lengthening the runway to accept larger planes, which could encourage more operators back to the region.

While Aspen loses out, Steamboat will gain: Frontier has announced new winter flights to the resort from 2010/11 - might be worth checking out the slopes there then, as the resort is considered one of Colorado’s more remote to reach usually.

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