Airline startup Breeze just announced a new East Coast base, setting the stage for a battle with New Haven-based rival Avelo
Breeze Airways has announced Hartford, Connecticut, as its fifth base to complement its growing domestic network.
The airline currently serves four routes from the city, but plans to open eight more in the future.
The news comes as rival carrier Avelo Airlines announced four new routes from its base in southern Connecticut.
JetBlue founder David Neeleman’s new low-cost carrier is establishing a permanent foothold in Connecticut, making it the second budget airline to set up shop in the constitutional state.
Breeze Airways, which launched in May 2021, announced Thursday that it will move to Connecticut with a new base at Bradley International Airport in Hartford. The company flew from Charleston to Hartford on its first day of operation and has since left town.
Currently, the company serves four nonstop routes from Hartford, including Charleston, SC; Columbus, Ohio; Norfolk, Virginia; and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. However, Breeze founder David Neeleman said there are eight more to be announced.
The airport will be Breeze’s fifth base, complementing its operations in Tampa, New Orleans, Charleston and Norfolk.
“Over the past few years, Bradley has earned a national reputation as one of the best-operated and most convenient airports in the country, and airlines are taking note of this as they increase service and add new routes over the years. Connecticut’s largest airport,” Connecticut Governor Ned said. said Lamont.
“Bradley is a key economic driver for our state, and the more airlines and destinations we can add from the airport, the more attractive Connecticut becomes for companies looking to grow their own businesses,” he said. he continued. “I am delighted that Breeze has committed to establishing a base of operations in Bradley, and I look forward to their continued growth here.”
Establishing an official base in Hartford means Breeze will permanently house aircraft at the airport and create more than 200 jobs, including hiring local flight crew and mechanics. According to the company, the airline will fly the first of its new A220s on all four existing routes, as well as increasing the frequencies of each flight.
Additionally, he secured more than $1 million in grants from the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) as long as he keeps the new jobs.
The news comes as Avelo, another new low-cost carrier launched in April 2021, announced four new routes from southern Connecticut, including Nashville, Tennessee; Savannah, Georgia; and Myrtle Beach and Charleston in South Carolina.
The airline made New Haven its East Coast base in November and currently flies six nonstop routes to Florida, but Breeze’s commitment to the state makes Connecticut a battleground for budget carriers. .
“Breeze is the latest in a long line of companies investing in and putting down roots in Connecticut,” said DECD Commissioner David Lehman and the nonprofit’s President and CEO. AdvanceCT, Peter Denious, in a joint statement. “The fact that the company is also adding flights is good news for business and leisure travelers.”
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