Lawton_Delta Airlines is back in Lawton after an eight year wait. With its CR J200 Regional Jet, the airline will offer two flights daily to Delta's hub in Atlanta. Now, the airport's existing carrier, American Airlines, will have competition for flights and prices. But, for travelers in Lawton, it means more seats going to more destinations - at competitive prices.
Having a second airline not only increases travel opportunities for the area, but competition between airlines could bring more people, and business to town.
Fly Lawton to Dallas, or Lawton to Atlanta - Lawton Fort Sill Regional Airport now offers the option. "Now that 70% of our traffic that leaves the area here goes toward the east coast, for just a perspective from our citizens here, it's a great thing," says Lawton Chamber of Commerce President Dana Davis. "It means that they have many more connections."
A group of familiar faces with the Lawton Chamber and Airport Authority in Lawton has been working to get Delta to our airport for more than eight years. They were the first to take a flight home to Lawton from Atlanta Monday. "Although today is very cloudy - a little overcast - I think we had some snow flurries, to us, to Lawtonians here, this is the most beautiful day in the world," said Airport Authority Chair Cassandra Lawson-Johnson. "The sun is shining, there are clear skies, and we're ready to take off into another sunset."
Now that travelers can connect in Dallas or Atlanta, they can fly more quickly to almost any destination without spending time on the road, or money on parking. "Why would you even go to a larger airport as in OKC or into Dallas, where you have to wait in line?" wondered Lawson-Johnson. "Going through security is going to take you maybe an hour or two. You can park right here, walk across with your bags, go right through security, and you're on your plane, you're there!"
With the addition of the second airline, not only will more travelers across Texoma use Lawton as their main airport, but new businesses can literally see just how fast Lawton is growing. "When we're trying to recruit businesses to come to Lawton, one of the things that's important to them is air service, and they don't want to be pinned in with just one destination," she says.