Avelo adding 9 new destinations from Wilmington Airport

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Citing strong early demand, Avelo Airlines has doubled down on Delaware flights, adding nine new nonstop Sun Belt destinations from the Wilmington Airport (ILG) this summer.

The announcement made at the airport came at a time on Thursday morning when none of the carrier’s jets were on the tarmac. That will change with the service expansion.

The addition of a second Boeing 737 at its Wilmington base will allow Avelo to nearly triple its network from five to 14 routes – the largest number of destinations ever offered from the airport. About 13% of the carrier’s small fleet of Boeing jets will be based in Delaware.

In the first of two unsuccesful service attempts at ILG during the past decade, Frontier Airlines added several new cities, but quickly dropped service and mainly focused on Orlando. Based on a look at its website, Frontier has offered lower low fares from Philadelphia to cities served by Avelo.

Trevor Yealy, head of network planning at Avelo, said the carrier was pleasantly surprised by early passenger numbers and moved up an expansion timetable that had been expected to be as long as a year away. Avelo made its debut on February. and reports that its jets have been 90% full on its five Florida routes that are typically flown twice a week.

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New destinations

Charleston, SC (CHS)
Effective June 23, 2023 – Mondays and Fridays

Daytona Beach, FL (DAB)
Effective June 23, 2023 – Mondays and Fridays

Greenville / Spartanburg, SC (GSP)
Effective June 22, 2023 – Thursdays and Sundays

Melbourne / Cocoa Beach, FL (Space Coast) (MLB)
Effective June 28, 2023 – Wednesdays and Saturdays

Myrtle Beach, SC
Effective June 23, 2023 – Mondays, Fridays and Saturdays

Nashville (BNA)
Effective June 22, 2023 – Thursdays and Sundays

Raleigh / Durham, NC (RDU) – Starting at $29 one way*
Effective June 22, 2023 – Thursdays and Sundays

Savannah, GA / Hilton Head, SC
Effective June 28, 2023 – Wednesdays and Saturdays

Wilmington, NC – Starting at $29 one way*
Effective June 22, 2023 – Thursdays and Sundays

Introductory one-way fares from ILG on the new routes will start at $29. Reservations can be made at https://www.aveloair.com.

Avelo Airlines CEO Andrew Levy stated, “The strong demand we are generating out of the gate is a testament to the convenient, affordable, reliable, and caring air service Avelo has introduced to the Delaware Valley. We are pleased with the enthusiastic reception Avelo has received since our airline took flight here in February. Based on this initial customer response to our first five Florida routes, we are excited to bring Wilmington, these nine new routes to several of our most popular East Coast destinations. We’re just getting started, and our partnership with the DRBA, as well as leaders, organizations, and communities from across the region, keeps getting stronger at every turn. I’m especially thankful for our dedicated and caring ILG-based Crewmembers who have brought Avelo’s presence here to life and look forward to welcoming even more folks to our team in the weeks and months ahead.”

Dignitaries at expansion briefing. Delaware River and Bay photo.

The nine new routes join five existing Florida destinations Avelo currently serves from ILG: Orlando (MCO), Tampa (TPA), Fort Lauderdale (FLL), Fort Myers (RSW), and West Palm Beach (PBI). The Thursday announcement also represents Avelo’s largest route expansion from a single base since the airline took flight two years ago.

Tom Cook, executive director of the Delaware River and Bay Authority, credited efforts by the state, county and City of Wilmington for paving the way for the early success of Avelo. The DRBA manages the airport, which is owned by New Castle County. Cook said word of mouth and largely positive posts about the airline on social media have been factors in drawing passengers.

New Castle County Executive Matt Meyer said he was initially skeptical of Avelo’s early plans, but has been impressed with its strategy of being part of the communities it serves.

Wilmington Mayor Mike Purzycki took note of previous efforts at air service, adding that Avelo had the right timing when it came to entering the market and tapping into the hassle factor that comes at Philadelphia International Airport.

With the expansion, Avelo employment will increase from about 75 to more than 100. The federal Transportation Security Administration will move to full-time staff at the airport.

To date, Avelo has flown more than 25,000 customers on more than 230 flights in and out of the Delaware airport.

The airline initially based one 149-seat Boeing 737 at the airport as a way to enhance local ties and better ensure on-time performance. The smaller 737 has been replaced with larger 189-seat Boeing 737 800s, with another Boeing 737 800 to be based here in late June.

In addition to ILG, Avelo operates bases at Los Angeles’ Hollywood Burbank Airport (BUR), Southern Connecticut’s Tweed-New Haven Airport (HVN), Orlando International Airport (MCO) and Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU).

Avelo and University of Delaware Athletics will become partners, with promotions that will include ticket giveaways at football and basketball games. UD had earlier used Avelo for chartering a team trip.

Since its launch in April 2021, Avelo has flown more than two million customers on more than 17,000 flights. It operates a fleet of 15 jets.

The airline offers low base fares, with added charges for seat assignments, more legroom, and checked luggage. It has been able to emerge as one of the best carriers in terms of on-time performance, because it offers all nonstop flights, typically from smaller airports.

Avelo serves 43 destinations in 24 states.

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