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San Diego flights now taking off from SLO Airport

Alaska Airlines SLO Airport
Dave Alley / KEYT

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - Flights to San Diego from San Luis Obispo are now taking off.

On Tuesday, Alaska Airlines began daily non-stop service from San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport to America's Finest City.

"We're really excited to launch service today to and from San Diego into San Luis Obispo," said Chuck Davison, Visit SLO CAL President & CEO. "It creates a great opportunity for people from another part of our state to get up here and see this wonderful place we call home."

The one-hour flight is the fifth new destination added to the airport in the just the past 36 months.

"Lot of travelers moving in an out, with six new markets and 10 new direct flights, we're going up above 20 flights a day," said Davison.

A sixth new market begins in mid-June when Alaska Airlines begins daily non-stop service to Portland, Oregon.

For Alaska, this marks the second destination from San Luis Obispo for the Seattle-based airline.

In April 2017, Alaska began daily-nonstop service to Seattle.

"We've been full pretty much every day, every flight since we started and with the new airport and the new facility, we're able to handle more flights," said Roseann Rydell, Alaska Airlines Contract Service Lead. "(SLO to San Diego) was just a natural progression."

Rydell said the airline believes the new route will be just as successful as the one to Seattle.

"People have asked that they want the service, from our very first day when we started Seattle service, people have asked for San Diego service," Rydell said. "It's a great fit."

One reason there is a lot of optimism for the new route is the natural tie-in with Cal Poly.

"San Diego has great connectivity for us," said Davison. "Cal Poly has about 4,000 applications per year from projective students living in San Diego County and about 8,000 alumni live in San Diego County."

Davison added research shows there are also more than 250 home owners living in the San Diego area that have a second home in San Luis Obispo.

San Diego joins an ever-increasing list of locations offered by San Luis Obispo, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Denver, Seattle and Dallas.

Davison is confident demand will remain high to make sure all of those flights and more potentially in the future will be successful.

"We have a really balanced travel portfolio here," said Davison. "About 50 percent of the travelers on every flight are from the outbound destination and about 50 percent are from the inbound destination. We continue to press in with some of our air carriers and even new carriers on new opportunities."

For more information about the San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport, visit www.sloairport.com

California / Lifestyle / San Luis Obispo County

Dave Alley

Dave Alley is a reporter and anchor at KCOY|KEYT|KKFX.