June 29, 2006

Festival Rumor

Looks like Festival is trying to work out a Rockford Mesa flight (http://www.flywga.org):


The Chicago area could be the next destination for Williams Gateway in its efforts to become a regional airport. And the Mesa terminal might be welcoming visitors from the Midwest long before the annual onslaught of Cubs fans in March.

Airlines, based in Rockford, Ill., is considering year-round service to Williams Gateway Airport, sources close to the negotiations said. Rockford International Airport — which earned its middle name with regular service to Cancun, Mexico — initiated the talks. Bob O’Brien, Rockford’s executive director and the man with a mission to ferry passengers between his home base and the Valley, said he expects to see that happen before year’s end. “It’s not ‘Phoenix or bust,’ it’s Phoenix now or Phoenix later,” O’Brien said.

“Rockford International is geographically the center of the population base for the Chicago-Milwaukee corridor, and the Chicago-Milwaukee relationship with Phoenix is very strong. There’s a lot of activity back and forth to (Chicago’s main airport) O’Hare. Given the congestion of O’Hare, we are trying to create a new passenger experience to the Phoenix area.” O’Brien said Williams Gateway and Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport are under consideration for the route.

June 28, 2006

East-West Connector

East-West Connector

The past week with the 100th flight and 10,000 passenger, I have heard alot of talk about how we need an East-West Connector. First of all it would cost millions. Second if we are going to rely on Mass Highway, it will not happen in our lifetime just drive over Airport Drive to see how fast they work.

How about the Mass Pike??? Put an exit onto Route 56, there is plenty of land for exits ramps in both directions. You would need to build out Route 56, but you could do that with very little in land takings since most of the buildings on Route 56 are far off the street and run the road right to the airport?

Far-fetched--yeah maybe, but there is much better chance of this happening then an East-West Connector across the City of Worcester. Not to mention this would greatly alleviate the traffic flow across the City since many people West of the City would be able to get onto Route 56 with a straight shot to the Mass Pike and would not have to fight traffic across the City of Worcester.

Arnold Palmer Airport

Think it was Brian, who mentioned about two years ago the similarities between ORH and Arnold Palmer Airport (great website and all parking is free). Unlike ORH, however, Arnold Palmer Airport was able to recruit a legacy carrier (NorthWest) with two shuttles per day to their hub in Detroit. Note part of a story below how they utilized their Small Community Air Service Grant to lure a carrier versus spending over $200,000 on a consultant:

Northwest began flying out of the Unity Township airport in April 2005, replacing the daily service to Pittsburgh International Airport that US Airways stopped offering in July 2004.
Airport officials offered Northwest a financial safety net for the first year, having combined $100,000 in local dollars with a $600,000 federal grant to market the service and fulfill revenue expectations.


Airport officials say they have not yet received a bill for the empty plane seats. Starting last April, the Westmoreland County Airport Authority was no longer responsible to guarantee Northwest revenues. Monzo said Northwest officials visited Arnold Palmer last week.
"We talked over a lot of ideas. We're ready to move on to the next step, whatever that might be," he said.

Authority Chairman Oland Canterna added, "It was very encouraging. I thought it was a good meeting." Northwest spokeswoman Jennifer Bagdade said no service changes are on the horizon. "We're satisfied at this point," she said. "We have no plans to make any changes to our Latrobe schedule."

June 27, 2006

Vegas Follow-up

Paxton great initial question and Matt thanks for the explanation. Maybe if Allegiant raises alot of money with their IPO, they will be able to upgrade their fleet and fly from ORH-Vegas??? Until that happens, or if that happens, we should be talking with Allegiant about adding more Florida destinations. We should get in touch with the people at St Pete's and Fort Myers and explain to them why we think ORH to their city would be perfect and have them on our side when we go to Allegiant.

As far as asking for more flights to Sanford-how can we get more flights when the current loads are running at 72%? And as we all know now Vegas is impossible. That leaves us with two goals:

  • First a shuttle to a major hub. Since JFK is the closest, this should be our number one goal.
  • Second, we need to be on the front lines for VLJ's that means Linear.

Skybus, DJ Air, CQ Air and any other start-ups should be kept on the radar screen but it will literally take years before their first flight gets off the ground and we do not have years. Again thanks Matt and Paxton for the input.


June 26, 2006

Allegiant to Vegas

It will not happen. Why?? I have been explained this by people who know this better then me, but here goes. The Allegiant fleet consists of older planes and in order for them to reach Vegas from Worcester (or any of the cities from the NorthEast), they would not be able to sell all the seats since the load capactity after the fuel needed to reach Vegas would be too much.

Those who know this better then me, please do not laugh too hard. If you (Paxton, etc) think I am wrong then ask yourself why they are not flyiny from any of their Northeast locations to Vegas? Maybe after the IPO when they are flush with cash, they will be able to upgrade their fleet??

In the short-term there is no way in hell Allegiant will be flying to Vegas from ORH. Worcester should start with working ST Petes/Fort Myers to make sure we are at the top of the Allegiant list, if they add these destinations.


WTAG Hank and Sherman Show were at ORH for the 100th flight this morning doing a live feed. This is great idea and the type of exposure that ORH needs to have more of. Overall I thought the show was very positive from what I heard, including Tim MacDonald's comments in regards to his flight in January.

Couple of quick points, however:

  • Allegiant is not going to add more Sanford flights to ORH when the loads are 72%. We should be asking when Allegiant may add another Florida destination like St Pete's. In addition, Allegiant will never fly to Vegas with their current fleet from ORH.
  • Surveys? One caller asked for more surveys. There is absolutely no need for another survey or more consultant studies.
  • Our number one goal right now should be an NYC shuttle to JFK on either JetBlue or Mesa. Once a flier out of ORH gets to JFK you can fly direct anywhere around the world and outside the country.
  • VLJ's could be the next major innovation in aviation. Invite Linear to ORH?
  • All of this can be done without an access road

Our next two goals thus should be trying

  1. Top of Allegiant's list for their 2nd Florida destination
  2. Shuttle to a major hub like JFK
  3. Linear Air invite to ORH



June 25, 2006

Youngstown Open Their Restaurant

Wonder when we will ever release our RFP? Maybe we need to wait for the "Master Plan" to see whether or not people will eat/drink at a restaurant at ORH?? Check out http://yngair.wordpress.com/ and the June 23rd, 2006 post.

Fiscal 2007 Budget On-line

Go to the City Website (http://www.ci.worcester.ma.us), then hit "Reports and Plans" tab, look for "Budget Office" heading then open 2007 Annual budget. After you open it go to the section for "Enterprise Funds" and go to page 4.

The wording is kind of confusing but it clearly says that MassPort will fund 1.47 million with atax levy allocation of 1.59 million "to provide the revenue structure necessary to operate Worcester Regional Airport in fiscal 2007." In total the projections then are that the airport will, in fact, lose 3,060,000 million (1.47 plus 1.59).

We need to end this partnership and find someone to buy ORH.

June 24, 2006

Projected Cost of ORH

I just caught a budget meeting of the City Council on local access. The projected costs are as follows:

  • ORH next fiscal year is $1,600,000 (32% of the operating deficit and 100% fo debt service)
  • MassPort will pay $1,500,000 (68% of the operating deficit).

If we did not have MassPort next fiscal year, it would cost the General Fund $3,100,000. In other words the airport is currently losing 258,333 per month or $8,493 per day!! IMG recommends that we should extend the current agreement?? I believe that the airport has potential, but July 1st will mark the beginning of the 6th year partnership between MassPort and the City of Worcester. Sorry, but this is not working.


FYI--Since September of last year this blog has had 52,212 page loads.

June 23, 2006

Today's Paper

There was a story about the 10,000 passenger today (note picture below).. Here was one line in the story:

"Massport’s contract to operate the airport expires in June 2007, Ms. Jacobson said. Formal discussions on renewing that agreement will begin after a master plan for the 1,300-acre airport is complete in the fall. A master plan meeting was held Wednesday night, and the third and final meeting is scheduled for the fall, she said. "

We should be in discussions now, even broaching the subject of selling ORH. In addition we should be talking to other airport management companies, any other possible suitors now.

Falmouth Airpark

Check this out:



  1. Yesterday's 10,000 passenger was the 10,000 embarking (outbound ORH-SAN) passenger.
  2. Yesterday's flight was the 98th outbound flight
  3. Average passengers per flight outbound equates to approximately 102 passengers
  4. MD-80 seats 130 so the average load is 78.5%
  5. The million dollar "primary status" grant from the FAA is not new money. We have been receiving the past few years, even when we were below 10,000 passengers. Reaching the 10,000 plateau exempts exmpts us from seeking a waiver for falling below 10,000.

Picture of 10,000 passenger above right:

June 22, 2006

100 Flights Correction--78% Load

The more I think about it. The 100th flight must mean the 100th flight out, does not count flights coming inbound. Today is the 98th flight out and our 10,000 passenger goes out so the average actually drops to 102 per flight outbound. Based on a flight capacity of 130 that comes to 78% load factors. This needs to improve.

Airport Meeting

I did not attend the meeting, but saw the reports on television and read the paper this morning. Let me get this right---the plan for ORH is to be a "medium growth"airport targeting 375,000 passengers. Great, how are we going to get there??? We waited 18 months for this, can't wait for the final Master Plan meeting this fall.

Yesterday I e-mailed our airport liaison, Mr Niddrie, inquiring about actual numbers for Allegiant since inception. In response I was e-mailed that Allegiant does not want this information released. Ironic that the day of the 2nd community meeting (12 months later then originally scheduled) on the ORH Master Plan to present all sorts of data from various studies, that the numbers of people flying our one commercial carrier can not be released to the public. Even more ironic is that my mother (lives one mile from ORH) woke up at 2:30AM to catch the Worcester Limo for a flight out of Boston.

Despite the fact Allegiant does not want their numbers released, I heard on the television and read in the paper that Allegiant will have its 10,000 passenger today and Monday will be their 100th flight. Not knowing which flight today has the 10,000 passenger (SAN-ORH or ORH-SAN), it was either flight 93 or 94, lets for arguement's sake say it was the 93rd flight. That equates to 107.5, rounding up 108 people per flight, with a capacity of 150 that is a 72% load. if the plane capacity if 130 (thanks YNG) then the load factor is 83%.

I would think that in order for Allegiant to make money, with their fares/the price of fuel, flying between Sanford-Worcester, they would need to be in (at the least) the 80-90% range. If Allegiant does not make money, they will stop service. Maybe we should be thinking of ways to increase the loads for Allegiant to ensure that they stay in Worcester and we reach 20,000 passengers before targeting 375,000 passengers.

Here are the facts:

  • this fiscal year ending June 30th, ORH costs the tax-payers of Worcester 1,000,00
  • next fiscal year the percentage paid by MassPort drops from 85% to 68% and ORH will cost the tax-payers of Worcester 1,500,000 (guesstimate)
  • 373 days from today the current operating agreement with MassPort ends
  • Allegian, the one commercial carrier at ORH, has loads of approximately 80%
  • ORH is on target for 20,000 passengers in 2006

Despite the fact the Telegram Editorial board feels that we are right on target, can we please


June 21, 2006

Tonight's Master Plan Meeting

I had a long frustrating day and decided not to go. Anyone who went please make some comments here. Hope that I am wrong but I am guessing that tonight will give very little insight any final recommendations on the Master Plan....

Allegiant Flights

Sales are looking real good for next week.. Leaving ORH there are only 4 seats available for Sunday, 1 for Monday and none on Friday. Lets hope the numbers stay at this level the rest of the summer.

Airport Director Reports

I get the airport minutes and read through them.. Check out 4: Reports of the Airport Director:

"Report on Allegiant operations - Commissioners were briefed on the enplaned and deplaned passenger numbers."

Shouldn't the official board minutes contain the information itself for the public (us) to see these numbers??? I am e-mailing this to our airport liaison right now. First to get the updated numbers and to incorporate it into the board minutes.

May Minutes on-line

Check out http://www.flyorh.com under the "Board Meetings" tab. One thing I found interesting on the bottom of page 1 and top of page 2:

· . "Data collection has been completed; FAA, Massport, MAC, City and Town of Leicester reps and airport staff, provided comments on the framework. The Community Meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, June 21, at 6:30 PM at the airport terminal to present the data as well as the framework of the plan. There will be some briefings provided prior to the meeting. Final recommendations will be presented at a future Community Meeting, sometime this fall."

In other words, I do not see any recommendations being made tonight. Do not think that I will be able to attend tonight hope others can, although it appears that tonight's meeting will merely be data while the fall meeting will have actual recommendations.

Airport For Sale $1

Think about it.. If we put out a bid and said airport for sale $1. Do you think that would generate some interest? I do.... Who knows what type of response that we would get, but why not try??

Lets say we did get some airport mgmt company, maybe a freight carrier (UPS) or who knows that came forward with a proposal which was acceptable. First off we would save a million per year in losses and who knows what property tax revenue would be generated.

These are the types of ideas that should be kicked around. Instead tonight I am betting that there will be no clear cut recommendations, but some general ideas for the public to make comments. Things like more hangers for GA activity, developing a couple of parcels of land, infrastructure improvements etc. will be the gist of the meeting.

June 20, 2006


I have met some of the guys from Leigh Fisher, originally Derrick Choi, and they really are very good at what they do.

In the end, there needs to be a sense of urgency/accountability etc to implement the greatest game plan in the world. You can have the Patriots devise a great game plan for a football team, but if you do have the coaches to practice withthe team, the plan will fail.

Lets for arguements sake say Leigh Fisher does an A+ job, then what??

Response to Anonymous

Response to Anonymous on the previous blog:

Whatever happened to ValueJet?? it became Airtran...

Getting to Boston is easy?? Have you been there lately.....

ORH can never be a PVD or a BOS, but it cam be a viable airport that actually contributes to Worcester's bottom line and quality of life, despite lacking an access road. I fear, however, that waiting for studies from Leigh Fisher/IMG or whoever is simply a waste of time.. What happens if we love the ideas from Leigh Fisher. Do we hire them to carry out the recommendations like we did with IMG.

ORH is costing us a million dollars per year and our operating agreement with MassPort is ending in one year. Can we please sell ORH??

June 18, 2006

Allegiant Tickets

I am really getting concerned about ticket sales.. To that end I will mail a letter to the airport liaison requesting updated ticket sales.

Please note below, the activity on http://www.flyorh.com

It peaked in March and has gone down each month.. Will Allegiant be able to fill four flights per week during the summer months?

Restaurant RFP

Today's Youngstown blog has a rumor about a potential restaurant opening at their airport that would be great for passengers and private pilots. ORH has had an RFP prepared and approved by MassPort that they have not released since last January.

The location itself has potential to draw customers from the West Side, not to mention passengers, and private pilots. We have a multi-million beautiful terminal with an empty slot for a restaurant and we are not actively soliciting businesses to come here?? Makes no sense to me..

June 17, 2006

Florida Attraction

Fantasy of flight looks pretty decent..


June 16, 2006

Master Plan

At the last meeting in December of 2004 (18 months ago), Leigh Fisher Associates talked in general terms. At that time they mentioned that they would be back in the Spring of 2005 with some concrete "ideas" for ORH. Better late then never, but lets hope that next Wednesday that there are some recommendations for us to look at it.

To be honest, I really can not remember much from that meeting 18 months ago. Anyone who went could they put down what they remember in the comments.. By the way the meeting is next Wednesday at the airport.

June 15, 2006

Festival Airlines Update

Call me crazy but when a company does a survey to find out where they are going to fly, it kind of scares me???


— Festival Airlines this spring asked Rock River Valley residents to help choose the destinations that the startup airline will fly from Chicago/Rockford International Airport when it begins operations later this year.

Airport officials said that thousands of you responded to that request. In fact, 5,188 airport customers and people from the region returned surveys as of Monday, the deadline for a promotional event put forth by the airport to attract participation. Festival Airlines sent survey’s to 32,000 people who are members of the Chicago/Rockford airport’s MilesAhead customer appreciation program and customers who have registered with the airline’s Web site www.festivalairlines.com. Survey respondents were asked to look at a list of destination favorites and then rate the destinations.

Company officials have said that they intend to use the surveys to help determine the destinations it will serve. Festival announced in March that it would base its operations center in Rockford and that Chicago/Rockford would be the first airport that the national vacation airline will provide service from. At the time, company officials announced several possible destinations which the company will serve, including top vacation spots in the U.S., Mexico, Canada and South America. Festival could release a list of destinations in July, the airport said.

June 14, 2006

Eclipse on Target

Note story below.. This means Linear Air (http://www.linearair.com) out of Bedfore will be the one of the first airlines to have a VLJ... We should be talking to them:

Today Eclipse Aviation, manufacturer of the revolutionary Eclipse 500 very light jet (VLJ), can see FAA certification on the horizon as the Eclipse 500 test fleet has exceeded 2,000 flight hours and completed the majority of required FAA certification testing. The company also announced that six customer Eclipse 500 VLJs are in various assembly positions on the production line. The Eclipse 500 is on track to achieve FAA certification by the end of this quarter and will be the first VLJ to market.

“Our test fleet of five Eclipse 500s continues to burn test points and build hours at a rapid rate. We accumulated more than 300 flight hours in the last four weeks,” said Vern Raburn, president and CEO of Eclipse Aviation. “I am also thrilled to see the production line coming to life. Last weekend, the first customer Eclipse 500 forward fuselage was mated to the aft fuselage

Change of Pace

I check out this blog (http://www.iag.blogspot.com) alot and have a link to it of the left. Here is a pretty neat story:

This is not photoshopped. It happened in early 1990 in the Persian Gulf, while U.S. carriers and B-52s were holding joint exercises. Two B-52s called the carrier (USS Ranger) and asked if they could do a fly-by, and the carrier air controller said yes. When the B-52s reported they were 9 kilometers out, the carrier controller said he didn't see them. The B-52s told the carrier folks to look down. The paint job on the B-52 made it hard to see from above, but as it got closer, the sailors could make it out, and the water the B-52 jets were causing to spray out. It's very, very rare for a USAF aircraft to do a fly-by below the flight deck of a carrier. But B-52s had been practicing low level flights for years, to come in under Soviet radar. In this case, the B-52 pilots asked the carrier controller if they would like the bombers come around again. The carrier guys said yes, and a lot more sailors had their cameras out this time. (Source:Strategypage.com)

June 13, 2006

CQ Air Update

The Web site for CQ Air, a startup airline that says it plans to offer service at Harrisburg International Airport, hints that the airline will let "the secret out" in a few weeks.
CQ Air Chairman Roger Sedlak did not respond to requests to comment. But statements from officials with federal regulatory agencies suggest that CQ Air has a way to go before it can begin flight service at HIA.

CQ Air's interest in HIA became public after a letter of support from Mike Adams, CQ's senior project manager, was included in a grant application for federal funding submitted by Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport. The application refers to service proposed by CQ Air that would include two flights daily with regional jets and turboprop aircraft. The service would start this summer and run through 2007.

According to the application, CQ Air seeks $100,000, including $75,000 from the FAA and $12,500 each from Luzerne and Lackawanna counties. "CQ Airlines is pleased to offer this letter in support of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport's Small Community Air Development Grant application for nonstop Harrisburg service on CQ Airlines, and the addition of other Intra and Interstate markets," Adams wrote in the April 6 letter. "The funding of this application will almost guarantee our implementation of low-cost service in this market and the access through our new proposed hub in MDT." MDT is the airport code for Harrisburg International Airport.

CQ Air had set June 5 as the date to announce its service, but the announcement was postponed. Adams told The Patriot-News that CQ Air still plans to offer service in Harrisburg, but he would not say when. CQ Air is renting space at HIA for its headquarters, HIA Aviation Director Fred Testa said. He said HIA and CQ Air do not have any other agreements, such as a lease for an airport gate. "This is a startup. It may take as much as a year," Testa said.
Nor does CQ Air have lease agreements at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, according to Airport Director Barry J. Centini.

June 12, 2006

Airport Commission

Next meeting is on June 19th..

Master Plan Meeting

Great News!!!

There is a community meeting Wednesday, June 21st at 6:00PM to 8:00PM on the ORH Master Plan Project. This is the second (first was in December of 2004) in a series of three community meetings and icludes Leigh Fisher Inc (consultants), the FAA, the airport, MassPort, stakeholders and of course you.

It will be held at the terminal building and if you plan to attend, e-mail our airport liaison (Phil Niddrie at NiddrieP@ci.worcester.ma.us).

JetBlue Shuttles

Maybe we can not get a ORH-DC route but with the JFK-DC shuttles from JetBlue, we would in essence have it with an ORH-JFK shuttle. Simply fly to JFK on a Embraer 190 from JetBlue out of ORH and connect to DC.


JetBlue Airways has announced that it will launch its own limited version of a New York shuttle out of Washington Dulles International Airport this summer with introductory fares as low as $39 each way, sharply undercutting competing carriers.

Beginning Aug. 17, JetBlue will operate six daily nonstop flights from Dulles to New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport, where the airline is based. The introductory fares require a 14-day advance purchase and must be bought by June 30. The tickets must be used between Aug. 17 and Sept. 30. Regular fares will be $50 to $145 each way, with one-way walk-up tickets starting at $90.

June 09, 2006

Cost of IMG

How much is IMG costing the City of Worcester?? The “Airport Strategic Plan and Aviation Marketing” study, which can be found on the City of Worcester Website, cost $100,000 last year. Today I received the qtrly reports to the Department of Transportation (DOT) on the Small Community Air Service Grant, as well as some other information from Airport Liaison Niddrie.

Over the past year, we have used IMG’s services and submitted their bills totaling 49,125.51 to the Department of Transportation (DOT) to be reimbursed through the grant This equates to 81.67% of all the of the total monies spent from the grant. Please note a detailed break-down below. Now there is a new contract signed with IMG for $55,640, which I imagine will also be submitted to the DOT.

IMG total = $204,765.51.

Small Community Air Service Grant

6/10/5 IMG $9,750.00
9/27/5 Event $726.75
10/5 thru 11/5 IMG $39,375.51
10/13/5 Sponsorship Event $500.00
10/26/5 Booth Business Expo $500.00
10/28/5 Event $75.00
10/28/5 Event $112.00
12/14/5 Fliers $920.00
12/16/5 Posters $740.00
12/22/5 Event Decorations $220.75
12/22-27/5 Event Catering $4,732.06
1/2/6 Radio Ad $1,500.00
1/16/6 Printing $1,001,.15

Total Spent $60,153.22
IMG $49,125,.51

Percentage of Small Community Air Service Grant Spent on IMG 81.67%


Add this to the list along with DJ, Festival and SkyBus. Another new airline based out of Harrisburg, which has not had its first flight:


Wrong Manchester

Maybe Manchester has added Boston to the name to help differentiate it itself from Manchester, England. Here is the story:

AN airline passenger who thought he was flying to Manchester ended up in a city with the same name in America. Jim Hourihan, a trainee pilot travelling back from Los Angeles, landed in Manchester, New Hampshire, instead of Manchester, England. He realised there had been a mistake when he caught a connecting flight in Cleveland, Ohio, and discovered it was heading towards New England

The 50-seat regional jet took him to the north-east American city of Manchester, once also famous for textiles. It was more than 3,000 miles away from his intended destination.
Mr Hourihan, from Liverpool, was travelling with Continental Airlines. He said: "I got on a Boeing 737 from LA, so I thought it was the right flight. "But then I got to Cleveland and, as soon as I saw the plane, I just knew for a fact that it wasn't going to Manchester, it was a 50-seater. And it was then that it dawned on me, there must be two Manchesters. But I had reached a point of no return. My luggage was on the plane.

"Everyone seems to find it funny apart from me." Mr Hourihan, 52, was treated like a VIP by Continental during his overnight stay in Manchester, New Hampshire, and said he liked the city. But he felt it could do with a few more pubs. He became something of a celebrity during his short visit to the city, which is 45 minutes from Boston, and appeared on the local television news.

Mr Hourihan had gone to California to attend a pilots' training course.
BargainHe thought he had snapped up a bargain when he called the airline in Los Angeles and was told his flight would cost only £185. He had three days to go before the end of his trip, but made the booking on this flight because he wanted to be sure to get back in time for his grand-daughter's birthday.

The mix-up came days after the American Manchester airport added the words "Boston Regional" to its name in a bid to boost business. A spokesman said the airport's name now appeared on the first or second page of booking agents' computer flight screens, rather than on later pages. Brian O'Neill, the airport's assistant director, said Continental booked Mr Hourihan on a flight to Newark, New Jersey, to connect to a flight home.

He said Mr Hourihan, who travelled to the right Manchester on Tuesday, is not the first passenger to have landed in the wrong city. It was named after the original Manchester, and now has a population of about 110,000. A spokesman for Continental Airlines said: "Due to a miscommunication between Mr Hourihan and a Continental reservations agent, he booked a flight from Los Angeles to Manchester, New Hampshire rather than Manchester, England as he intended. "The fare he paid was less than a third of the fare applicable for travel to Manchester, England. "Once Mr Hourihan contacted Continental from Manchester, New Hampshire, the airline rebooked him on flights to Manchester, England at no extra charge, as well asgiving him accommodation and meal vouchers."

June 08, 2006

JetBlue Shuttle to JFK

We may have mentioned this before but Portland, ME has added a JetBlue Shuttle to JFK. Other cities in the NorthEast that have a JetBlue Shuttle to JFK include Boston, Syracuse, Rochester, Buffalo and Burlington... ORH needs a JFK flight a couple times a day. If not JetBlue, then a Delta Connection like Mesa.

Also JetBlue Airways has announced the launch of its Washington D.C. to New York service beginning August 18. According to a report by the Washington post, the six daily, non-stop flights will fly forth and back between Washington's Dulles International Airport and New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport. The airlines have kept the introductory prices fairly low at $39 each way. However, the regular prices will range from $50 to $145 each way.

Wonder what people who have told me the hub and spoke system is dead are thinking??

Allegiant Loads

I am starting to get worried about the passenger loads on Allegiant.. The rates are great, the service is good and the flights are on time, but the only flight that looks close to sold out is the June 30th flight with 7 seats available..

June 07, 2006

Mesa Starts at Cedar City

Mesa Airlines not afraid to start flying from airports that have little to no passengers. Check out the story below. Lets hope we are having conversations with Mesa:


Cedar City Regional Airport announced in January that Mesa Airlines would replace SkyWest as the air service provider to the airport, and despite community concerns, the new airline has found its place in Cedar City.Mesa Airlines officially began flying from Cedar City on May 7, and currently offer flights to Salt Lake City and Las Vegas.Gale Waite, airport advisory board chairman, was initially skeptical of a flight to Las Vegas.“SkyWest tried a flight to Las Vegas with almost no success,” he said. “However, I didn’t count on the demographic change we’ve seen over the past few years.”The Las Vegas flight is currently filling an average of 43 percent of the available seats, while the Salt Lake City flight only fills an average of 26 percent, said Jeffrey Hartz, a senior planning analyst for Mesa Airlines,.“Thus far, the Las Vegas flight has been by far the strongest flight,” Hartz said.

According to Hartz, the transition has been smooth, and passenger numbers continue to increase.“From our aspect, things are going very well,” said Hartz. “Especially considering we are coming into this community where SkyWest was well liked.”So far, responses from people using the airline have been positive.“I have not had one complaint,” said Steve Farmer, Cedar City Regional Airport manager.While there has been a few minor problems, Waite agreed the transition from SkyWest to Mesa Airlines has gone smoothly.“The people from Mesa (Airlines) have been very nice to work with,” he said.In addition to changes in fares and flight destinations, Mesa Airlines also flies a 19-passenger jet, which is smaller than the 30-passenger airplanes operated by SkyWest.However the smaller planes seem to have benefits. “This way, everyone gets a window seat and an aisle seat,” Steve Farmer, Cedar City Regional Airport manager, said.

The airport has a goal to achieve 10,000 enplanements throughout the next year. An enplanement is a paid passenger on a flight out of Cedar City. If the airport reaches that goal, it will be eligible for a $1 million grant, which can be spent according to regulations set by the Federal Aviation Administration.Waite doesn’t think the smaller planes would pose a problem in reaching the goal.“We do need to just about fill the plane every time, but I think we can do it,” he said

June 06, 2006

Copy of Letter to Airport Liaison

Mailed this out on May 17, nothing yet:

May 17, 2006

To: Airport Liaison Phil Niddrie
Re: Public Records Request
Pages: 1 of 1

Thanks for all your help. Today I have three requests.

1) Can I have a copy of all the DOT qtrly reports that have been file in regards to the DOT Small Community Air Service Grant?

I am attaching copies of the two reports that I already have.

2) Did we file an application for the Small Community Air Service Grant with the DOT this year?

3) IMG… Recently I saw a motion that was passed to pay IMG $55,640 for air service marketing initiatives.

a) How much money have we spent to date on IMG for air service marketing initiatives?
b) Is this new request a brand new contract or an increase to an existing contract?


Bill Randell

Airport Website

About a month ago I asked for nominations for a website for a commercial airport that is worse then ORH's;


Nobody has any nominations? Here were some other secondary airports and their websites, you compare... After WoMag do a story on our webite, I actually thought some changes would be made--none have.

Fitchburg Airport website. Not bad--considering it is a general aviation airport in Massachusetts.Other Allegiant Destinations
Duluth Airport
Billings, Montana
Killeen, Texas
Santa Maria, Ca
Abilene, Texas
Laredo, Texas

June 05, 2006

City Council Order

Tomorrow nights agenda number 30 filed by Councilor Rosen:

30. Request City Manager report to City Council at the August, 2006 meeting providing information and responses to the following concerns relative to the Worcester Metrowest Boston Airport: 1) What steps (including financial incentives) have been taken recently, and will be taken during the next fiscal year, to work with both start-up and expanding airlines to secure additional commercial air service for our catchment area (especially between Worcester and New York City)? 2) What charter flight and general aviation operations are currently using the airport, and what marketing and recruitment steps have been and will be taken during the next fiscal year to expand upon such operations? 3) How can non-aviation business income be expanded? 4) Would MassPort be interested in purchasing the airport, and would such a sale provide more airline activity while unburdening the City with it’s share of the operating deficit as well as all debt service, marketing grant matching funds, airport liaison and consultant costs? 5) Would the sale of naming rights to the airport generate substantial revenue? (Rosen)

June 04, 2006

Airlines to Recruit?

Lets think about this:

Second-tier Carriers:

TransMeridian: out of business
Hooters Air: out of business
USA3000: potential
Spirit: decided to fly out of Boston, would they consider ORH? Doubtful.
Sun Country: mid-West carrier

Discount Carriers:

SouthWest: no way (Manchester/Providence)
Airtran: no way
JetBlue: couple of the 10 Boston-JFK shuttles toORH?


DJ Air: are they officially dead?
Festival Airlines:


Linnear Air: we should talk to them based out of Hanscom
POGO: have not flown one flight

Charter Carriers:

Companies like FunJet, Vacation Express, Apple Vacations etc that book vacations.

Regional Carrier:

Cape Air

Bottom line is that there are no a whole lot of options for ORH, although we should aggressively pursue USA3000, Cape Air, a charter and Linear Air. Whats left??? Legacy Carriers... No Legacy Carrier is going to come in here with a direct flight. We need to convince a Legacy carrier through one of their "connections", like Delta through Mesa, to get a shuttle flight to one of their hubs.

Allegiant Loads

Starting to get worried that the load factor may be slipping on the Allegiant flights. I cheked all three flights the rest of this week and tried to book 9 tickets (the maximum allowed on-line) and I was able to get seats on all the flights. By the way the prices could not be blamed since they were excellent ....

Starting to worry how Allegiant can make money out of ORH with these low prices, not full planes and high fuel prices?

Flight Cancelled

I was reading the April board minutes.. Note 4) Report on Allegiant Operations: Commissioners were briefed on enplaned and deplaned passenger numbers, as well as a cancelled flight. You can find the board minutes at http://www.flyorh.com, the April board minutes still have not been posted on the city website.

Shouldn't the numbers be included in the board minutes, versus us having to ask for them?? Does anyone know why a flight was cancelled??

Flight Cancelled

I was reading the April board minutes.. Note 4) Report on Allegiant Operations: Commissioners were briefed on enplaned and deplaned passenger numbers, as well as a cancelled flight. You can find the board minutes at http://www.flyorh.com, the April board minutes still have not been posted on the city website.

Shouldn't the numbers be included in the board minutes, versus us having to ask for them?? Does anyone know why a flight was cancelled??

DOT Grant Monies

About two weeks back I requested copies of all the qtrly DOT grant filings on our Small Community Air Service Grant so I should get them this week. I will total these reports and tally how much monies have been spent and on what. From here we can calculate how much is left to spend.

Assume the airport board meeting will be on June 12th, the 2nd Monday of the month. At that time the board minutes for May will be approved and we will get a copy to post. Lastly I am going to request passenger counts and number of flights flown by Allegiant since inception through the end of May.

Legacy Carrier for ORH

My favorite airline consultant, Mike Boyd, may be right again:

I think it has been great having Allegiant to Sanford and lets hope they start flying to another Florida destination, like St Pete's. Lets take the remaining DOT small community air grant monies and go after Delta Connection, Mesa, to fly a JFK-ORH shuttle 2 times per day.

Here is part of the story:

And there's not much airport officials, or local politicians stumping for service, can do about that, said Michael Boyd, a Colorado-based aviation consultant. "You can wheel in Sen. (Chuck) Schumer all you want," Boyd said. "It's not going to change the economics of the airline industry."

Sustained high oil prices, stiff competition on their best routes and wider expansion have eroded discounters' traditional advantages, Boyd said. Meanwhile, the legacy airlines have shed a lot of fat in recent years and are poised to be healthier in the long run, he said, with deep route networks and international service that can connect local travelers with more destinations.

For Stewart, that means JetBlue or AirTran might not be the panacea some hope.
"What you really want to focus on is Northwest to Detroit, and Delta to Atlanta or Cincinnati," Boyd said. "Places where you can connect to the rest of the world."

Paid Inc Moves to Boston

Check out the line about being closer to an airport.

BOSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 30, 2006--Paid Inc. (OTCBB:PAYD) has moved its executive offices, formerly located in Worcester, and another subsidiary office located in Boston into a 5,300 sq. ft. office in Boston's Back Bay area and has retired all remaining long-term debt.
The new Boston office is designed to accommodate Paid's rapid growth within its celebrity services business which provides fan club management, fan club premium ticketing and experience packages, merchandising and fulfillment to entertainment, music and sports celebrities, as well as sports marketing and NFL player agent representation to professional athletes.

The new headquarters allows Paid to consolidate its administrative staff with its K Sports & Entertainment subsidiary and the staffs of its celebrity services and memorabilia authentication businesses that were previously dispersed in separate facilities. The Company is retaining its fulfillment, customer service and AuctionInc(TM) patent-pending ecommerce software operations and staff in its current Brussels Street location in Worcester.

"The new location consolidates our management and creative staff in one location so we can work more effectively as a team in a facility that better accommodates our technical and space needs," said Rich Rotman, Paid, Inc. CFO and COO. "We are now closer to many of our current and potential customers, as well as the airport, and it offers the opportunity for expansion in the future. Furthermore, the move frees up space within our Worcester customer service and fulfillment center that will be used to service our rapidly growing celebrity services and AuctionInc businesses."
Paid's new headquarters address and phone number is:
236 Huntington Avenue, 5th Floor
Boston, MA 02115

June 03, 2006

Kinton New MassPort CEO

Lets hope Mr Kinton can see how ORH can be a vital cog in a three airport system owned by Massport....

BOSTON --Massachusetts Port Authority head of aviation, Thomas J. Kinton Jr., will become the agency's acting CEO when Massport chief Craig Coy steps down July 1, the Massport chairman announced Friday.

Chairman John Quelch said the Massport board will approve Kinton at its June meeting. Kinton has accepted the new post, he said. "He knows the issues and our stakeholders very well," Quelch said in a press release. "He'll be a tremendous support to the board and the staff in maintaining focus on the business and making the transition to a new leader."

Coy, who stabilized Massport in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, announced on Tuesday he was resigning to work for a private company that focuses on homeland security.
Kinton has been with Massport for 30 years. As aviation director since 1993, Kinton has been responsible for all activities and operations of Boston Logan International Airport, Hanscom Field in Bedford and Worcester Regional Airport.

Kinton also served as acting Massport CEO from November 2001 until April 2002 before Coy's appointment. He replaced Virginia Buckingham, the agency's head at the time of the attacks. After the attacks, critics portrayed Massport as a patronage haven and Buckingham as an unqualified political appointee.

In the press release, Kinton said, "I appreciate the confidence the Board is entrusting in me at this time of change." Quelch said the Massport board would quickly launch a search for a permanent CEO to replace Coy.

June 02, 2006

JetBlue Syracuse to Orlano Direct

One of our initial ideas was to attract JetBlue to ORH with one of their new Embraer 190 and have them fly a couple times per day to JFK, JetBlue's hub from where you can connect direct anywhere in the country. JetBlue ended up flying an Embraer 190 shuttle to JFK, but out of Boston, not Worcester, 10 times per day.

We maintained at that time, if people from Worcester County started flying alot to one destination and justified a direct flight, JetBlue would put in a direct flight. Check this out:


JetBlue must have noticed demand for a direct flight to Orlando from Syracuse from their Syracuse-JFK shuttle and will fly direct once per day each way starting November 1st. Also note how JetBlue met with the Mayor of Syracuse and other community leaders who actually went to New York to meet with JetBlue.

I still feel we could convince JetBlue to divert 2 of their 10 daily Boston-JFK shuttles to ORH. Putting that aside based on the recent revelation about Delta Connection, Mesa, moving 12 Dash-8's to JFK, we should approach them about two daily shuttles to JFK. Unlike the administration of the Syrcause airport, who involves the city administration and community leaders to attract an airline, our airport adminstration airport gives us no idea who we are in negotiations with nor the status of any on-going negotiations, we can only guess.

June 01, 2006

New MassPort Head

Boston Globe story.. Notice no mention of Worcester airport when listing projects run by MassPort???

BOSTON --Craig P. Coy, who stabilized the Massachusetts Port Authority in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, announced Tuesday he was resigning to work for a private company focusing on homeland security.

Coy, a 20-year veteran of the Coast Guard and former White House Fellow and adviser on counterterrorism, was portrayed as a silver-haired, senior executive when he was hired in March 2002. He replaced Virginia Buckingham, a well respected but political appointee with little transportation experience who was heading Massport when two commercial jets were hijacked from Logan International Airport and flown into the World Trade Center.

"This unexpected, new opportunity will allow me to continue to focus on homeland security issues, to contribute to measures to protect our transportation infrastructure from the threat of terrorism, and to build on the many other accomplishments we have worked together to achieve here at Massport," Coy wrote in an e-mail to his staff under the heading, "A Personal Note."
Coy, who signed a five-year contract extension two months ago, announced he had accepted a job at L-3 Communications as president and chief operating officer of its Homeland Securities Group, a job change confirmed by Massport spokeswoman Danny Levy.

Coy added in his e-mail: "Together, we have accomplished a tremendous amount, including the reorganization of the authority around the concept of business units; completion of the nation's first "inline" hold baggage screening program; and the completion or near completion of construction on Terminal A, the International Gateway, the Terminal Area Roadway system, and Runway 14/32. "In addition, together we have made significant progress in enhancing the profitability and security of our Maritime operations through, among other things, the implementation of our nationally recognized Maritime Transportation Security Act plan," Coy said.

The Massachusetts Port Authority is an independent public authority which runs bridges, seaports and airports, including Logan and Hanscom Field in Bedford. "Craig Coy did an excellent job at Massport, and brought a new level of professionalism to the agency. We're sorry to be losing him to the private sector," said Eric Fehrnstrom, spokesman for Gov. Mitt Romney, who will appoint a replacement. The Massport chief executive's job is a political plum, presiding over a vast empire on land, sea and in the air. The agency has often been derided for patronage, but Coy -- a graduate of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy and Harvard Business School -- cultivated a business culture focused on "paradigms" and "metrics," former aides said.

Under the terms of Coy's recent contract, he was to be paid $250,000 a year with a promise of two percent annual cost of living increases and the potential for bonus pay. Potential replacements could include Thomas J. Kinton Jr., a Massport veteran who oversees aviation matters, and Ranch Kimball, state secretary of economic development. Romney appointed Kimball to the Massport board in April 2004. L-3 Communications, headquartered in New York, provides secure communications and transportation technology to clients including the Department of Defense, the Department of Homeland Security and other government agencies and private companies, according to its Web site. Among its products are flight data and voice recorders, the so-called "black boxes" used to investigate aviation accidents