Hattiesburg-Laurel airport to extend services, residents speak

JONES COUNTY, Miss. - The Harrisburg-Laurel Regional Airport will continue its American Airlines jet service for another two years.

After meeting the U.S. Department of Transportation’s subsidy requirements and having made progress in the market, American Airlines rebid and was awarded service to the Pine Belt. With this renewed service comes some changes.

“The afternoon flight will move to midday and be direct to and from Dallas,” said Tom Heanue, Executive Director.

“This is an excellent upgrade to our service in that we will not share the jet with Meridian and travelers will get to Dallas earlier in the day, which will make their connections better for getting to their destinations. The late night return from Dallas to the Pine Belt will move to 10:57 PM, which allows more flights from the east and west coasts to connect and passengers to stay at their destinations a little longer,” Heanue said.

One Pine Belt resident, Martha Ginn said, "I do not fly very often, but when I do it is so convenient to fly right here."

Ginn added, "Oh, I think its great they are extending. I have family in the Dallas area, so this is my trip to go over and see all of them."

Another resident, Elease Lindsey said, "That is fine for some people, but since I do not like driving at night, I would rather get back a little earlier." "But I do love the resources they provide right now" added Lindsey.

These changes are a sign of progress and should help the Airport with its traffic. “During their first two years of service, Meridian has been doing a lot better filling the airplane,” said Heanue.

“We hope this change will bring more Pine Belt travelers to use the unshared aircraft and the Airport.”

The changes to service start on November 4, 2016.

The service is provided by American Airlines, the world’s largest air carrier to Dallas/Ft. Worth. The flight is about an hour in the air from PIB to DFW.

The new flight schedule is as follows (and always subject to change):

Departs PIB 6:50 AM Arrive MEI 7:51 AM Arrive DFW 9:30 AM

Departs DFW 10:30 AM Arrive PIB 12:01 PM

Departs PIB 12:26 PM Arrive DFW 2:21 PM

Departs DFW 8:20 PM Arrive MEI 9:50 PM Arrive PIB 10:57 PM

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