October 23, 2013

Allegiant Air switches first N.H. flight from Portsmouth to Manchester

The airline says the government shutdown delayed the installation of passenger screening equipment at Portsmouth International Airport at Pease.

The Associated Press

PORTSMOUTH, N.H. — Allegiant Air is switching its first New Hampshire flight from Portsmouth to Manchester, saying the federal government shutdown delayed the installation of passenger-screening equipment at Portsmouth International Airport at Pease.

click image to enlarge

In this May 2013, file photo, Allegiant Air jets are parked at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas. Allegiant Air is switching its first New Hampshire flight from Portsmouth to Manchester, saying the federal government shutdown delayed the installation of passenger-screening equipment at Portsmouth International Airport at Pease.

AP Photo/David Becker

Customers who are planning to fly on the first flight out of Portsmouth on Friday were notified by email Monday of the change.

Allegiant had served Portsmouth in the past, ending in 2007. It plans to operate twice weekly, Mondays and Fridays, between Portsmouth and Orlando Sanford International Airport.

Allegiant issued a statement Tuesday saying the furlough of Transportation Security Administration personnel “stalled the installation of necessary passenger and baggage security screening equipment” at Pease.

“Moving the flight to Manchester was the best possible solution to ensure passengers would be able to continue with their travel plans,” the statement said. Jessica Wheeler, a spokeswoman for Allegiant, said the airline hopes to have the equipment set up at Pease by the flight scheduled for Nov. 1.

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