Tulsa International Airport Sees Uptick in April Passenger Numbers: Adds New Non-Stop Service

TULSA, OK – May 9, 2013 – Tulsa International Airport (TUL) saw passenger enplanements grow in April 2013 breaking a streak of flat numbers, and/or decline. Also in April, Riverside Resort Hotel & Casino added non-stop Tulsa to Laughlin, NV service on Sun Country Airlines and Southwest Airlines launched non-stop Chicago Midway service.  April also marked the end of a six week effort to collect data regarding business travel needs of the region, with over 700 people participating in TUL’s business travel survey.


Airport officials announced today that passenger enplanements at TUL rose by 1.5% for the month of April over April 2012. “We’re happy to see passenger numbers grow as we move into the busy summer travel season,” said Alexis Higgins, Deputy Airports Director Marketing and Communications. “Airlines have said that Tulsa flights are completely full for the upcoming Memorial Day Weekend, and we hope this is an indication of what’s to come for the summer.”


Riverside Resort Hotel & Casino added new non-stop service from Tulsa to Laughlin, Nevada making it the 16th destination and 18th airport with non-stop service from Tulsa. The service is a public charter operated by Sun Country Airlines with scheduled flights through the end of the year. Passengers may book flights on the new service by visiting www.RiversideResort.com. The service operates a few round trips per month in the summer, and Riverside Resort will add additional monthly flights later in the year during cooler months when desert vacations are more attractive to travelers.


On April 14, Southwest Airlines launched non-stop daily service to Chicago Midway, making it the 19th airport served from Tulsa.


TUL launched the Tulsa Regional Air Service Initiative in March of this year and recently wrapped up the first step of the program; a business travel survey. The airport had 740 survey participants and has gained insight on what the community wants in air service from Tulsa.


–       96% of respondents indicated that TUL is their airport of choice.

–       Top ten respondent business travel destinations are (in order from highest to lowest): Houston, Dallas, Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., Kansas City, Orlando, Atlanta, and Denver.

–       TUL has existing non-stop service to all markets indicated except for Los Angeles, Kansas City, and Orlando.


TUL plans to use this information to work toward new air service, though they admit that Kansas City is going to be an extremely hard market to gain non-stop service to. Daniel Meier, Air Service & Business Development Coordinator at TUL said, “Kansas City is a short haul market, and airlines have been reducing and/or canceling short haul routes across the US because they are not generating the profits that airlines need. Oklahoma City recently discovered that they are losing their non-stop Kansas City service on August 10. OKC has a larger market than Tulsa and if they can’t retain their Kansas City service, it doesn’t help our case for service from Tulsa, which is closer to Kansas City and a shorter drive.”

Click here to view TUL’s route map.