Penticton undeterred by WestJet news

The City of Penticton has not been deterred by news WestJet has decided against adding Penticton as a stop for its Encore regional carrier in 2014.

Penticton Mayor, Dan Ashton, says the announcement does not change the overwhelming demand for increased air service from Penticton, particularly a direct route to Alberta.

"Personal and business travellers have expressed loud and clear the desire for a Calgary connection and the business case supports that link," says Ashton.

"We are confident WestJet has Penticton on its radar when they expand their regional carrier in the years to come."

A stakeholder steering committee was formed earlier this year, aggressively pursuing enhanced air service for Penticton Regional Airport.

At the present time more than 50 per cent of the local market uses Kelowna International Airport to fly to Vancouver and Calgary.

Back in December Air Canada announced it would be adding a fourth daily non-stop flight from Penticton. RIght now the carrier provides three daily flights from Penticton to Vancouver, Monday through Saturday with two flights on Sunday.

The additional daily Vancouver to Penticton service is scheduled to begin May 1.

In 2011, Penticton Regional Airport served approximately 80,000 passengers, however, market analysis identified the total air travel market is more than 210,000 passengers, sufficient to support and additional daily flight to Vancouver and two daily flights to Calgary.

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