Santa Maria Public Airport District General Manager, Chris Hastert, has confirmed that after October 5, 2016 United Airlines will no longer be flying in or out of Santa Maria.
Hastert confirms that late Friday afternoon he received notice that the airlines would no longer be servicing people at the airport.
Without service, after October 5, people like Patti and Tom Lynn will have to make other plans. They had their 50th wedding anniversary trip all planned out. They were going to be leaving from Santa Maria through United Airlines then to San Francisco and then Orlando.
“The travel agent let us know we were going to have to re-book our flights and whole vacation because United is going to quit Santa Maria Airport,” says Patti Lynn.
Right now, there are two airport carriers in Santa Maria. United Airlines goes to San Francisco and Allegient Air goes to Las Vegas three times a week.
“For a town of over 100,000 people that we can’t have our own carriers what’s wrong with this picture,” says Lynn.
Hastert says he’s disappointed in the lack of timely notice that the airline gave the airport and is in the process of contacting employees to let them know what will be happening.
He says problems have occurred with the airlines including their change in flights in May 2015 where they switched their service from Los Angeles to San Francisco.
In a statement, United Airlines officials say, “we made the difficult decision to end service between Santa Maria and San Franciscobecause the route did not meet our expectations and is no longer sustainable.”
Airport officials say they are in the process of talking to other service providers that could
come here to the airport.
The Lynn’s say another convenient feature at the airport is the free parking. They say they’ll now need to account for travel time and other expenses for their trip.
As for Clint Fulton, he just came in a United Airlines flight from San Francisco, “it’s not good for Santa Maria I have no idea why like I said the plane was full.”
Airport officials say United Airlines will contact people who have booked flights after October 5.