GNO, Inc.’s Hecht Touts Airport: ‘Flying Farther’

NEW ORLEANS – Michael Hecht, President & CEO of Greater New Orleans, Inc., released the following regarding the growth of New Orleans International Airport and what it means to the Greater New Orleans area:


         In a global economy, you are either global – or you are not. That is why international flight connectivity has been a top priority for GNO, Inc. – we believe there is little we can do that will have greater systemic impact than more flights to more places.

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         Working with our outstanding team of New Orleans International Airport, tourism leadership and elected officials, we were first able to secure a flight to Toronto, on Air Canada. Then, we were able to reopen the Gateway to the Americas (New Orleans’s historical strength) by landing Copa, which flies non-stop to Panama, and then connects to over 50 destinations in Central and South America.

         Now, with the announcement that on May 2017 German airline Condor will begin non-stop service between New Orleans and Frankfurt, America’s most European region has reconnected with Europe – for the first time since 1982.

         The specific benefits are clear. Frankfurt (FRA) is Europe’s #4 busiest airport. From Frankfurt, individuals will be able to connect to over 120 other destinations, in 111 countries, including on codeshare partner Lufthansa. Economically, Germany is a key partner, ranking #2 in foreign investment projects in Louisiana. More broadly, Europe is our most important foreign investor, representing five of the top five foreign employers in Greater New Orleans. Tourism, already at record numbers, will get a significant boost, as Germany is one of the largest source markets for international visitors to Louisiana, with lengthy vacations averaging 13 days. Further benefits will accrue to conventions and destination healthcare, as individuals discover the ease of flying into MSY instead of ATL, ORD or IAD.

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         Condor has a great product, with large, state-of-the-art 767-300ER aircraft. Fares start as low as $399 economy and $999 “lie-flat” business, one-way. Service will begin seasonally, with Wednesday and Sunday flights from May through September. Condor’s model is as demand is proven, they add flights and eventually move to year-round service.

         New Orleans International Airport now has 15 airlines and 54 nonstop destinations, including 5 international destinations. MSY is one of the fastest growing airports in the nation. We are flying farther than in decades, and the benefit will be most felt right here at home.

         For more information

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