Airport changes could mean lower fares

By Brittany Pieper – email

SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) –Shunterria Adley hasn't flown in about 2 years, and she says the main reason is the price.

"It's expensive. A couple years ago when I went to North Carolina back and forth is was like $500. If they went down a little bit I would fly a whole lot more."

Northwest Louisiana Air Service Task Force members say Adley is not the only one complaining about the prices at Shreveport Regional Airport.

"We've had a lot of complaints about the high fares, and the way to reduce the fares is to increase competition. That's our goal, to have more competition among the airlines," said Task Force Chairman, John Hussey.

The airport brought in consultants to suggest how they could cut costs and attract low fare carriers. One of the recommendations was to cut the first security check point when you drive into the airport.

"They said we don't really need that. It doesn't do much for the security. We also have some fire service that was set up for a much larger operation, and we don't really need all that. So, those are two of the main suggestions," said Hussey.

While Adley wants lower fares, she doesn't want to cut out security.

"They need to keep it. Just so, people want to be secure," she said.

However, other travelers like Rebecca Games, would support the cuts is if meant lower prices.

"If you can attract airlines that can bring business to the area, I think that you're gonna bring more money to the area," said Games.

Other suggestions from the consultants included increasing marketing funds and building strong community support to attract lower cost airlines.

Now, a committee is looking at how much these cuts would actually save. They'll present their report to the Air Service Task Force at the end of October. Then, the task force will submit a report with recommendations to the mayor in December.

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