By IAN MUNRO
Daily News-Record 10/1/19
WEYERS CAVE — Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport will be adding a new flight to Dulles International Airport and changing the departure time of the flight to Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport starting on Dec. 4, according to Heather Ream, communications director of the Weyers Cave airport.
Since partnering with SkyWest in April 2018, the airport has seen notable increases in passenger traffic, such as a 67% increase in passengers year-to-date compared to 2018.
The new times and flight are a “direct result of passenger demand,” Ream said.
The new one- hour direct flight route from Weyers Cave to Dulles is slated to depart the Valley at 8: 20 p. m., and the return flight departs from Dulles at 10:20 p.m.
The departure flight to Chicago’s O’Hare International is slated to move almost four hours earlier from 1:55 p.m. to 9:42 a.m., as well as begin operating on Saturdays, the only day the flight does not operate currently.
“There’s a lot of connecting opportunities in Chicago, so us getting there earlier, instead of the afternoon flight, is going to be an advantage,” Ream said.
The return flight from O’Hare back to the Valley is also scheduled to depart later, from 3:35 p.m. to 5:05 p.m.
The time changes will help Valley and visiting travelers by allowing them to take flights back even after a busy afternoon instead of having to stay away for an extra night, Ream said.
“It just allows you to get back home earlier,” Ream said. “I think that’s really important to the business traveler.”
The established daily direct flight to Dulles will also be departing 10 minutes earlier, at 6:20 a.m., and departing from Dulles to return to Shenandoah Regional at 8:15 a.m. — more than four hours earlier than current service, which departs at 12:30 p.m. from Dulles.
Until Dec. 4, the Bombardier CRJ-200 50-seat regional jets will continue their
twice a day arrival and departure from Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport to Dulles International and O’Hare International.
In April 2018, Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport partnered with Sky-West Airlines, a United Airlines affiliate.
By April 2019, the Weyers Cave airport saw a 260% increase in passenger traffic to total 29,001 travelers, using the airport over the previous 12 months.
Previously, the airport had been partnered with Via Airlines, and during the last month of that partnership, 302 passengers passed through the gates.
April 2019 service with SkyWest saw 2,730 passengers — more than a ninefold increase.
The increase passengers at Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport broke a 20 year record for monthly travelers, Ream said, which was beaten again in October 2018 and then yet again in July with 3,546 passengers using the airport.
“We think these additional flights and the change in times will make our service even more attractive to passengers and expect our number to continue increasing,” Ream said.