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Pacific Wings wins DOT contract


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POSTED: Wednesday, July 01, 2009

OWENSBORO, Ky. » Maui-based Pacific Wings Airlines will begin a new regional airline that will offer low-cost flights out of Owensboro, Ky., to Nashville, Tenn., later this summer.

Pacific Wings expects to begin flying out of Owensboro-Daviess County Regional Airport around Aug. 1, its chief executive officer, Greg Kahlstorf, said.

“;Our goal is to begin service within 30 to 45 days,”; said Kahlstorf. We've already started the process in Nashville.”;

The U.S. Department of Transportation recently approved an annual subsidy of $1.07 million for the airline's flights from Owensboro to Nashville for each of the next two years.

Pacific Wings plans three flights daily, one on Saturday and two on Sunday in a nine-seat Cessna Caravan. If more than nine seats are sold on any flight, the airline says it would send a second plane to Owensboro.

Kahlstorf said tickets for the Nashville flights are expected to cost $39. It includes the option of a continuing trip to Atlanta.

Great Lakes Airlines won an Owensboro contract in 2008 but never started service.

Airport Manager Bob Whitmer told the Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer the board “;is thrilled to be offering commuter airline service once again.”;

Owensboro only has had regularly scheduled commuter service for about six weeks since the Federal Aviation Administration grounded RegionsAir in March 2007.

Pacific Wings, which started as Air Nevada in 1974, now serves cities in Hawaii, New Mexico, Texas and Georgia, with more than 100 scheduled daily flights between 21 cities.