The new flights, from Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport to Fort Myers and Tampa, begin December 19 and will run daily through April 12, 2021, according to a news release this week.
The service was initially scheduled to end Jan. 10, but pushing it back will help meet pent-up demand for travel in the new year year.
“United is extending the schedule for these flights well into next year, so that when travelers are ready to fly, more nonstop flights are available to popular destinations like Tampa and Fort Myers,” said airport director Brian Dranzik. “More flights always benefit the traveling public, and I’m pleased that United is continuing to provide these options to Milwaukee travelers.”
United currently runs regular nonstop service from Milwaukee to Chicago, Denver, Houston and New York. The Chicago-based airline will join Southwest Airlines and Frontier Airlines as the only airlines with direct routes between Milwaukee and both Tampa and Fort Myers.
Extending the MKE-Florida schedule was a “proactive and demand-driven” move to increase travel routes to popular warm-weather destinations, said Ankit Gupta, United’s vice president of domestic network planning and scheduling.
“The extended schedules have been designed with customers in mind and are aligned with holiday and spring break periods in Milwaukee,” said Gupta.
Tickets are available for purchase now through United’s website.
Airlines are prepping for holiday demand despite Center for Disease Control recommendations to postpone travel and stay home for the holidays in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The pandemic has resulted in a painfully slow year for air travel. By October, a total 2.3 million passengers had used Milwaukee’s airport, compared to 5.8 million passengers by the same time in 2019, according to airport data.