Delta begins nonstop flights from Rochester


Starting Tuesday, Delta Airlines will be offering nonstop flights from Rochester to Detroit and Atlanta, MPR News reports.

The launch of the two nonstop flights comes after more than a year of talks between Rochester International Airport officials and Delta, says the airport's executive director, Marty Lenss. The deal was announced in May.

Lenss tells MPR News that the launch of the new service coincides with the spike of airport traffic in Rochester in the fall, partly because of the influx of new resident doctors at the Mayo Clinic.

“This new service will significantly enhance our customers' options when traveling out of the Rochester area by providing one-stop connections around the world from Delta’s three largest domestic hubs,” Jeff Davidman, Delta’s director for government affairs, told the Star Tribune in May.

MPR News says about 225,000 passengers travel through Rochester International every year, and about one-third of the travel is business related to the Mayo, while another third is Mayo patients and visitors. The other traffic is vacation related, the publications says.

The Rochester Post-Bulletin says the first flight from Rochester to Atlanta is set for Tuesday at 2:30 p.m.

The inaugural flight will reportedly be a 50-seat plane. Half of the flights, however, will be on larger planes with 76 seats, the Post Bulletin says.

In recent years, Rochester International's only nonstop offerings were flights to Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport through Delta and to Chicago through American Airlines, Minnesota Business says.

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