For Want of a Hard and Fast Schedule


Mark emails us with these thoughts:

"I have a company in the area that has clients who regularly fly to Branson/Springfield area.  I am struggling with your website, because I cannot find out on what day what flights come in and out of the airport.  With this information I would be better able to help assist my clients on what days to travel from what cities.  On another note, has there ever been talk about adding a direct flight to the northeast such as Philadelphia, Newark or Washington/Baltimore?  Many of our clients fly to and from this area of the country and I assume that a sizeable number of people fly to the northeast since it is such a hub of population."

Mark...  We've have found that trying to publish a dependable airline schedule is like trying to nail jello to a wall. That's because airlines are continually adjusting schedules. We have also found that few people have the expectation of seeing a published schedule. When they want to travel they typically go to an airline or travel web site. They input where they want to go and when. They are then offered choices and they choose. In this day and age very few people begin the travel itinerary process by wanting to see a schedule.

We can make the general statement that the service offered from Springfield by Delta, American and United is daily service. In other words, each of these airlines fly to their Springfield destinations daily. On the other hand, Allegiant airlines typically flies to each of its Springfield destinations several times a week. You can find airline and destination information here.

As for you thoughts about service to the Northeast...

It's a matter of the airlines deciding they want to fly directly from Springfield to a Northeast city. The current state of the airline industry works against us in this regard. Here are a couple of the factors:

  • For the past ten years the airlines have mostly served small market airports, like Springfield, with regional jets. These are small jets that typically carry fifty people. The economics of flying regional jets doesn't usually allow for a flight any longer than 600 miles. After 600 miles regional jets start to loose money in a hurry. The distance from Springfield to NYC is 1067 nautical miles.
  • Springfield is a small air market. From the airline perspective there isn't enough demand in Springfield to justify service to any one NE city. So what do airlines do? They collect passengers from small markets, like Springfield, and fly them to large hub airports. At the hub, small market passengers are, in effect, collected and deposited on bigger airplanes and flown to NE destinations. Most travel to the NE, from Springfield, is done through the hub airports in Chicago, Memphis, Dallas, or Atlanta. This is called the "hub and spoke system." Our airport is a spoke.

Bottom line: from the airline perspective we have service to the Northeast. We just have to connect through a hub to get there.


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