TWIN FALLS, Idaho — Skywest Airlines announced it will reduce service from the Magic Valley Regional Airport to Salt Lake City and vice versa to once a day this winter.
The schedule change is happening in part because of the massive financial impact during the COVID-19 pandemic and other issues.
“One is just a forecast of passenger demand coming up in the winter," said Joshua Palmer, Public Information Coordinator for the city of Twin Falls. "The second is really just the financials. The airline industry has been hit pretty hard. I mean, we talk about COVID and some of the quarantine efforts that have taken place. That really affected airlines all around, especially in smaller markets like ours.”
The morning flight is being canceled, and while there will be no real impact on the city, the airport, or the airport's master plan update, it could potentially affect travelers in need of a connecting flight.
“That morning flight made it much easier to connect to those afternoon flights, making it much easier to have a day trip for business or whatever it may be so that’s going to make it a bit more challenging,” Palmer said.
Despite the sudden change, officials hope that eventually the flight will get reinstated. However, a lot of that depends on passenger demand once the winter season is over.
“When it indicates to them that we can add in that flight, they will do so," said Palmer. "We’ve had reductions in flight schedules in the past and they’ve been added back in just largely based on that passenger demand.”
The scheduling change is set to go into effect on Monday, November 1. For more information about the flight change, residents are encouraged to head to the city's website.