Beginning May 29,Skybus Airlines will begin low-cost once-a-day flights from Bellingham to Columbus, Ohio.Why Columbus? That’s the headquarters city for the new airline that is staking its success on offering the lowest available fares.
From Columbus, the country’s 15th largest city, local travelers could connect to major East Coast destinations such as New York, Washington, D.C., and Boston.
“Beginning today, passengers can buy airline tickets for less than the cost of a tank of gas,” CEO Bill Diffenderffer said Tuesday in a press release. He has pledged his new airline will offer at least 10 seats at $10 one way on every flight. Until when? Always.
“These are not promotional fares that will go away in a couple of weeks,” Diffenderffer said. “These are the everyday low fares we promised when we began working to build Skybus.”
Regular fares to Columbus start at $50, but the last seats on the plane can be $150. Skybus’ goal is to have its maximum fare at about half the maximum cost on other airlines.
Skybus passengers will have to rough it though. Passengers can’t check a bag through to their destination even if they connect on another Skybus flight out of Columbus. They will need to retrieve their bags from the Bellingham flight, go back through security and recheck the bags onto their next flight. The airline charges $5 per bag for the first two checked bags per passenger and $50 per additional bag.
Ticket sales are all online.
Skybus also will charge for drinks and meals in flight, and passengers are not allowed to bring their own food and beverages on board.
The airline could eventually fly from Bellingham to other destinations if demand is there.