By Michael Garko, In Airline News
After years of campaigning for west coast flights, Raleigh-Durham International Airport has finally secured a valuable route for the airport. North Carolina Governor Bev Perdue and RDU officials announced on Wednesday that United Airlines will be bringing flights from its hub in San Fransisco to the Research Triangle region.
“United is pleased to offer Raleigh-Durham travelers the convenience of nonstop service to San Francisco, improved access to the nation’s largest technology center and the additional connections to and from Asia that this service will enable,” said Ron Baur, United’s vice president of fleet at the press conference. “We look forward to partnering with airport, business and civic leaders to support the success of this service and the increased economic development and tourism it will facilitate.”
Landing the west coast flight to San Fransisco has long been a goal for the second larges airport in North Carolina. Raleigh/Durham has not seen nonstop service to the Bay Area since Midway Airlines flew to San Jose in 2001 before ceasing operations.
“We all share in the celebration for this new service because as a community we worked together to bring this flight to RDU today,” said Michael Landguth, RDU airport director. “Businesses, particularly the life sciences and technology sectors, have been very vocal about the importance of this flight to their ongoing success and ability to grow and compete. The region’s economic developers have worked closely with RDU to illustrate the strength of our market and the growing demand for service to the West Coast and Asia.”
Flights will begin August 14 using a Boeing 737-800 aircraft. With an early flight to San Fransisco, RDU passengers will be able to easily connect on flights to destinations throughout the Pacific including Tokyo, Hong Kong, Osaka, Shanghai, Beijing, Seoul and Kahului, Hawaii.