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September 18, 2018

Frontier Air stop in Portsmouth gives Mainers a new way to fly south

Air travelers from southern Maine will get a new option for heading south on Dec. 6 when Frontier Airlines begins flying out of Portsmouth International Airport, about 5 miles from Kittery at the former Pease Air Force Base in New Hampshire.

The airline will launch flights to and from Orlando, Fla., on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays, the Portsmouth Herald reported, and may add other destinations based on market demand. One-way fares will initially be $59, according to the airline, whose slogan is "low fares done right."

Frontier currently flies to over 100 cities. Orlando is its second-largest hub, after Denver, and serves about half of them.

The airline will be the second operating out of Portsmouth, whose ticketing code is PSM. Allegiant Air flies from the airport to several Florida cities and Myrtle Beach, S.C.

But because Frontier offers tickets through third-party vendors, unlike Allegiant, the new tenant will create "more exposure" for the airport, Pease Development Authority Executive Director David Mullen told the Herald.

The airport, off Interstate 95, occupies a site that was converted to civilian aviation after the Air Force Base closed in 1991, and also hosts a business park.

The development authority recently approved a $19 million expansion of the airport, which will include the addition of a two-story, 12,000-square-foot passenger area and a 2,100-square-foot baggage screening facility. Construction is expected to begin in November and to take 18 months.

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