In October, Quad Cities International Airport saw most passengers since pandemic began

Local News

The return of seasonal routes through Allegiant at the QC International Airport led to a strong month for passengers in October, the airport’s best since the pandemic.

The Quad Cities International Airport has recorded its highest number of passengers since the pandemic began, reaching 51,623 travelers in October. The return of seasonal routes through Allegiant Air is a contributing factor to a strong month, the airport said Thursday.

“October has historically been a busy month at the airport, even surpassing November and December,” said QC Airport executive director Benjamin Leischner. “Leisure travel has rebounded at a much faster rate than business and in many ways is carrying the industry. We’re seeing that here with Allegiant gaining 6 points of the market share over 2019, evening out the playing field between all four airlines that serve the Quad Cities.”

The QC Airport in Moline saw 51,623 total passengers last month, compared to 26,415 passengers in October 2020, and 65,572 for the same month in 2019.

Flights to Punta Gorda, Fla., resumed in October 2021, departing Friday and Monday. While Punta Gorda has been a seasonal route at the QC Airport since it was introduced, two more Allegiant routes saw temporary pauses in response to the ongoing volatility of travel in the pandemic, an airport release said. St. Pete-Clearwater and Phoenix-Mesa both had a brief hiatus in late-summer but have returned to their normal Wednesday/Saturday schedule.

Allegiant is known for its nimble approach to air service and ultra-low-cost airfare, the airport said. It uses a destination-to-destination network, rather than the hub and spoke network more typical of legacy carries like American, United and Delta, which helps cut costs. Allegiant has a unique ability to quickly adjust routes and provide seasonal or even event-based service. That flexibility is one of the reasons it has weathered the decline in travel over the course of the pandemic.

Allegiant’s full schedule from Moline (MLI) is: 

  • Orlando/Daytona Beach/Sanford (SFB): Thursday, Sunday
  • Las Vegas (LAS): Thursday, Sunday
  • Phoenix/Mesa (AZA): Wednesday, Saturday
  • Punta Gorda/Fort Myers (PGD): Monday, Friday
  • St. Pete/Clearwater/Tampa (PIE): Wednesday, Saturday

Leischner recently met with Allegiant representatives to discuss how routes out of MLI are performing as part of Allegiant’s annual conference with airport partners.

“We received positive feedback in terms of how the current routes are performing,” said Leischner. “They’ve had a great year growing their network and capturing pent-up travel demand. We are optimistic that our partnership with Allegiant is on a good track and will continue to grow.”

For more information, visit qcairport.com.

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