Allegiant to offer nonstop flights from SBN to Knoxville starting June

NOW: Allegiant to offer nonstop flights from SBN to Knoxville starting June

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- In 2023, 821,548 travelers flew in and out of South Bend International Airport (SBN) from 12 nonstop destinations.

Monday morning, they announced a 13th, Knoxville. Tenn.

Starting June 14, a new route will take flight to McGhee Tyson Airport (TYS).

To celebrate the airline will offer one-way flights as low as $45 dollars.

One frequent SBN flyer told ABC57 how convenient it is to get where she needs to get from a smaller airport closer to home and was excited to hear of more direct flights.

"Then the other month I flew to New York City, we had a direct flight, so it is so convenient, and I love it, we don't need to connect anywhere else,” said Nancy Imasila, a South Bend Resident.

"It's kind of a bustling little gem. Different than the other leisure destinations when you think about beaches of Florida, or Vegas, or Arizona" said CEO and President of the South Bend Regional Chamber of Commerce, Jeff Rea in Knoxville following the press conference on Monday morning.

Rea was there for the big announcement and says expanding flights at the airport help attract new people to the region and help the Michiana economy soar.

"The more people that fly in and out of here... the greater the economic impact. Very few companies that have the economic impact that South Bend Internation Airport has. Almost a billion dollars of economic impact," Rea added.

Making South Bend a connection hub to anywhere in the world from their 13 nonstop destinations, including the addition of Sarasota, Fla. in 2019.

"So it is easy to get any place in the World out of South Bend,” said David Sage, St. Joseph County Airport Authority Board of Directors President.

The hope is the announcement is followed by more to come, which will be determined by how well the new route does.

"So this is a catalyst for more lines to come online and we are really excited about that,” said Bethany Hartley, South Bend Elkhart Regional Partnership President and CEO.

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