The Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport is gearing up for increased business, and more business means larger airplanes. Conrad Fournier and his wife just flew in to the Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport. The California couple are among the 1,000s of additional people flying in and out of the local airport during the spring and summer seasons.
Mr. Fournier says, “I like this size airport. Our airport back home is tiny, so this is an improvement over that. It’s easy to get around here. Like Dallas has a really nice trolley system, but it’s really way too big.” Over the past three years, the Gulfport-Biloxi Airport has averaged three quarters of a million passengers a year. During the peak spring and summer flying season, the airport expects its normal business to increase by 15%. To accommodate the additional passengers, the major airlines are flying larger planes in and out of the airport.
Clay Williams, the Director of the Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport, says, “Delta has five flights to Atlanta daily. We’re starting to see the Airbus 319 here for the summer and the Boeing 717, a 110 seat aircraft, is coming in for the summer.” Fournier also says, “I prefer bigger planes because they're smoother. They're bigger, you can move around in them.” The increased business means less availability for seats. Airport officials recommend making reservations three to four weeks in advance. Williams closes, “We want to sustain that, because again, it’s a seasonal service, because again, we have a busier summer travel season here on the Gulf Coast, but the more people who use the airport, the better chance we have of sustaining the business going into the fall and winter months.”
For now, local fliers can enjoy the benefits of the peak travel season on the Coast, a longer list of flight choices and roomier seats, until the extra airport traffic slows down come fall.