Delta cuts direct flights to save money

By Kimberly Holmes – bio | email

COVINGTON, KY (FOX19)  - Delta Airlines said it needs to cut more direct flights to save money.

We spoke with airline spokesman Kristin Baur over the phone Tuesday afternoon. She said the company is dropping direct service to five cities: Montreal; Oklahoma City; Des Moines, IA; Providence, R.I.; and Tri-Cities, TN.

It's been a tough year for Delta. Baur said the company hopes the cuts will help bring their budget out of the red. CVG is Delta's second largest hub, and those cuts will leave the airport with about 180 total daily departures.

These cuts come just weeks after the airline announced trimming four other direct routes from CVG. That round included: Huntsville, Charleston, Savannah, and Tulsa.

Baur said Delta took a look at all of their destinations and determined cutting these latest five cities will have little impact on local customers. Still, companies that depend on airlines to bring in business, like the Northern Kentucky Convention Center in Covington, disagree.

"We're disappointed that that's happening," said convention center spokesperson Pat Garvey. "We have a lot of people that we sell our community on because there are direct flights into Cincinnati. Now it'll make it harder for them to get here."

Baur said those cuts will take effect in February. Right now, it's unclear if those cuts will be the last for the airline in 2010. Baur said Delta is currently reviewing more possible cuts for the 2010 Spring/Summer schedule.

Also, no word right now if those cuts will mean lay-offs or any other changes in employment.

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