Springfield-Branson National Airport passenger numbers rising

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — A busy holiday weekend is expected at the Springfield-Branson National Airport and passenger numbers are on the rise.

Officials say in June the airport came close to matching numbers from June 2019 and expects the same match in July.

“We are hoping to come back soon,” said Angel Brunetti an airline passenger.

Brunetti and her family came here for an early vacation.

“We came to visit some family that lives in Springfield and we went to Branson,” said Brunetti.

Now it’s time for the family to head back to Idaho.

“Last year we were going to make the trip, but with the pandemic and everything we were unable to, so this year we wanted to make it happen,” said Brunetti.

“There is so much vacation travel, which I think is driven by the fact that people want to get the heck out of the house,” said Kent Boyd, a spokesperson with the Springfield-Branson National Airport.

In 2019 the airport hit a record high number of passengers and this year as the pandemic hits a record low things are taking off again.

“The first three or four months of the year it was pretty slow, but it was really amazing starting in late Springfield heading into July,” said Boyd.

Allegiant has added three new flight destinations in recent weeks.

“It is good news for this airport and Allegiant has helped us out a lot in recent years,” said Boyd. “They helped us out during the Great Recession because there was still a lot of vacation travel during the recession compared to business travel and they are helping us now during the pandemic.”

Allegiant is doing well with tourists, but America, Delta, and United Airlines rely on business travelers. The airline says nationwide business travel is still down 60% but expects the market to rebound in the fall.

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