Alaskan airline to begin service in Presque Isle, Bar Harbor

By Jen Lynds, BDN Staff
Posted May 21, 2012, at 3:34 p.m.

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — An Alaska-based airline chosen in March to continue to operate under the Essential Air Service program at Northern Maine Regional Airport in Presque Isle will begin service between the city and Boston’s Logan International Airport on June 15.

Officials with Anchorage-based Peninsula Airways, doing business as PenAir, announced Monday that nonstop flights begin that day with three flights per day Monday through Friday and two flights each Saturday and Sunday. The Presque Isle to Boston inaugural flight will be departing Boston at 5:35 p.m. and arriving in Presque Isle at 7:30 p.m. June 14. Full service begins June 15.

The U.S Department of Transportation chose PenAir to provide critical flight services to the airport under the Essential Air Service program.

PenAir will use a 34-passenger Saab 340 aircraft to operate 19 weekly round trips, year-round, between Presque Isle and Boston. PenAir is one of Alaska’s largest regional airlines.

Officials from PenAir said Monday that an introductory fare of $115.30, including tax, each way will be available starting May 21. Limited seating is available and the offer lasts from June 15 to June 28.

PenAir was chosen after Colgan Air petitioned the Department of Transportation in Sept. 2011 to end its service between Boston and Presque Isle and between Bar Harbor and Boston this year. Colgan Air expressed a desire to close its Boston office because the market that it serves has become smaller.

The Department of Transportation’s Essential Air Service program, established in 1978 during the period of airline deregulation, provides federal assistance to air carriers serving smaller communities that otherwise might lose service because of economic factors.

Officials from PenAir will be at Northern Maine Regional Airport at 4:45 p.m. Tuesday, May 22, at an event sponsored by the Central Aroostook Chamber of Commerce. Dave Hall, PenAir’s chief operating officer, will be on hand, as will several PenAir employees and crew.

“We are excited to start our venture into this market and to bring our brand of customer service to the northeast,” Hall said.

PenAir also was chosen by the U.S. DOT to continue the EAS program at the Hancock County-Bar Harbor Airport in Trenton. The airline will begin service from Boston Logan International Airport to Bar Harbor on May 24.

PenAir is one of the largest operators of Saab 340 aircraft in the United States. The airline started out in 1955 with just a two seat Taylorcraft aircraft and now operates 11 Saab, 30-passenger aircraft and employs more than 500 people. The airline is a codeshare partner with Alaska Airlines and has electronic ticketing agreements with American, Delta, Alaska, USAir, United and several other carriers.

All schedules and fares are available at www.penair.com or by contacting PenAir Central Reservations at 800-448-4226.

http://bangordailynews.com/2012/05/21/business/alaskan-airline-to-begin-service-in-presque-isle-bar-harbor/ printed on July 28, 2014