MIAMI – Startup airline Breeze Airways is interested in adding flights to Northwest Arkansas Airport (XNA) with several unserved routes.

Breeze Airways is slated to begin passenger flights some time this year. Since announcing the official brand in early 2020, the carrier has not confirmed any routes and destinations. However, in January 2021, Breeze submitted a letter noting potential flights to Bentonville/Fayetteville’s Northwest Arkansas Airport.

According to a filing published today, Northwest Arkansas Airport is requesting a grant of $250,000 as part of the US Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Small Community Air Service Development Program (SCASDP) to target Breeze Airways and expand low-cost carrier service.

The document contained Breeze’s letter of support for XNA to receive this grant. However, Breeze cannot guarantee flights to the airport “should XNA receive funding”, but the grant will “greatly enhance the probability of new service”.

Photo: Breeze Airways

XNA Airport Targets Breeze and Other Airlines

Northwest Arkansas Airport’s primary goals with this SCASDP grant are to gain additional low-cost carrier service, increase competition and decrease fares, grow enplanement numbers, and regain passenger traffic that has leaked to nearby airports.

XNA Airport reveals it met with Breeze Airways during Routes Americas 2020, which took place in Indianapolis early last year. Breeze Airways now appears to be interested in launching flights to Northwest Arkansas Airport. The new startup airline states there is potential for them to fly a number of unserved routes out of XNA and their new service would “help reduce airfares and stimulate new travelers”.

According to XNA Airport’s filing, they are also targeting other low-cost carriers for additional or new service:

  • Alaska Airlines (AS) – Does not serve XNA
  • Allegiant Air (G4) – Already serves XNA
  • Frontier Airlines (F9) – Already serves XNA
  • JetBlue Airways (B6) – Does not serve XNA
  • Southwest Airlines (WN) – Does not serve XNA
  • Spirit Airlines (NK) – Does not serve XNA
  • Sun Country Airlines (SY) – Does not serve XNA
  • Avelo Air (new startup airline) – Does not serve XNA
Jetblue is among the low-cost carriers XNA is targeting. | Photo: Otto Kirchof/Airways

XNA’s Targeted Destinations

Northwest Arkansas Airport reveals it’s targeting these cities: Austin, Baltimore, Boston, Burbank, Charleston, Fort Lauderdale, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Key West, Las Vegas, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New Orleans, Punta Gorda, St. Augustine, St. Louis, St. Petersburg, Salt Lake City, San Antonio, Sarasota, Savannah, and Tampa.

Allegiant Air recently added nonstop service to Austin. As for Breeze Airways, the carrier hinted at commencing operations with destinations in the southeastern United States, which could be cities such as Tampa, Savannah, and Charleston. These could eventually develop as potential destinations for Breeze to serve out of XNA.

For now, Northwest Arkansas Airport remains as a potential destination for Breeze Airways. Depending on the US DOT grant, XNA Airport could soon see new low-cost service, which will benefit travelers seeking cheaper flights.

Featured Image by Breeze Airways