Lynx takes flight, but not to Aspen " yet | AspenTimes.com

Lynx takes flight, but not to Aspen " yet

Sandy Shore
The Associated Press
Aspen, CO Colordo

DENVER ” After a two-month delay, Frontier Airlines Holdings Inc. said Tuesday it expects to receive federal certification and launch its new regional turboprop operation by Thursday. But not to Aspen.

The Denver-based carrier had hoped to begin the subsidiary, called Lynx Aviation, in October but the Federal Aviation Adminis­tration was still reviewing its application. At the time, FAA officials said the process takes time, but they didn’t know of any specific issues delaying Frontier’s request.

“Final certification is expected by Dec. 6, and Lynx anticipates its first flights that after­noon,” Frontier spokesman Joe Hodas said.

The operation will use turboprop planes on routes to Wichita, Kan.; Rapid City, S.D.; Sioux City, Iowa; Billings, Mont., and Tulsa, Okla., he said.

Earlier Tuesday, Ted Christie, a Frontier vice president of finance, told analysts that they hoped to have Lynx in operation by Fri­day. He discussed Frontier’s operations on a webcast during the Calyon Securities airline conference in New York.

Frontier announced plans for the region­al operation in September 2006 with the goal of serving smaller and mid-sized cities that lack of competitive air service. Aspen is expected to be among them, but that service is not part of Thursday’s launch.

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Lynx will use 74-seat Bombardier Inc. tur­boprop planes that will fly under the Fron­tier name.

As it awaited approval, Frontier began flying three Lynx routes ” to Wichita, Kan., Rapid City, S.D., and Sioux City, Iowa ” in October with aircraft from its regional partners.

Frontier serves cities in 32 states, Mexico and Canada from its Denver International Airport hub where it is in a competitive bat­tle with United Airlines and Southwest Air­lines.