Allegiant Air is continuing its retreat from Minnesota, putting service between Duluth and Phoenix in the hangar permanently.
“We didn’t see the demand on the route that we had hoped,” Jessica Wheeler, spokeswoman for the Las Vegas-based discount airline, said Thursday.
The flights had been suspended for the summer and were scheduled to resume Nov. 1, Wheeler said. The twice-weekly flights began in October 2011 and were year-round until this summer.
The airline’s service connecting Duluth with Las Vegas and with Orlando continue, she said. The Las Vegas flights are year-round, while the Orlando flights are taking a summer break.
Allegiant recently pulled out of the Rochester market, making its final flights to and from Phoenix in May. The airline also announced at that time the suspension of flights between Fargo-Moorhead and St. Petersburg, Fla., until December.
Wheeler said the airline has no other changes planned for service in or near Minnesota. Those markets include Sioux Falls, S.D.; Grand Forks, N.D.; and St. Cloud.
St. Cloud Mayor Dave Kleis said numbers at St. Cloud Regional Airport remain strong. “Our numbers have been at target,” Kleis said Thursday. “We’ve had good numbers all year round.”
Kleis said he hasn’t heard anything contrary from Allegiant officials. The mayor said there have been strong summer traffic numbers between Phoenix and St. Cloud, in part because Minnesota transplants are escaping the Arizona summer heat to return to the relative cool of Minnesota.
Allegiant started year-round flights between St. Cloud and Phoenix in December 2012 and added seasonal service between St. Cloud and Florida in December 2013.