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An OTR Exclusive: Skybus Cities

I believe this could be the OTR’s first scoop:  Sources confirm (and I can say with 98% certainty) that this is the list of Skybus’ initial cities (perhaps not for launch, but at least in the first year or so):

Burbank, Bellingham (north of Seattle), Westover Air Base (Springfield, MA – Hartford’s secondary (?) airport), Cancun, Columbus (home base), Cozumel, Fort Lauderdale, Greensboro, Kansas City, Nassau, Oakland, Punta Gorda (Fort Myers’ secondary airport), Richmond, San Diego, San Antonio, St. Augustine (Jacksonville), and Stewart – Newburgh (New York).

They’ll announce this officially in the next few days, but the route map will look something like that. 

If it makes you feel any better, I hadn’t heard of Westover or Punta Gorda either.

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  1. This is news? I’ve known about this for almost 3 days now.

  2. Did you learn about it from the blabbermouth at the bar I was at Friday night?

  3. My father-in-law, John Weikle is the founder of Skybus. My wife also works there.

    Punta Gorda has been there since day 1. They have just been waiting for that airport to make some updates to the runway for a A-319 to land there.

    When Bill Diffindiffer makes the announcement of 7 more cities in the next few weeks, Punta Gorda or St. Augistine will be one of them. Most likely Nassau too.

    I hope this RyanAir model works in the US. I think it will. So far so good, Delta and Southwest are not matching and are not seeing Skybus as a competitor!!! And they shouldn’t, as Skybus is not looking to steal their customers. They are tapping in to a whole new market!!

  4. Matt,
    What is Skybus’s reasoning for a Columbus to Kansas City route? I just can’t see that one working out, but love the Columbus to LA, Oakland and Fort Lauderdale.

    How soon do you think the Nassau route will be added? How soon will they start selling beyond December 15th?

  5. My roommate is a flight attendant at Skybus. Apparently, she has seen the schedule for 2007 and Stewart is on there as is Toronto and Cabo San Lucas. She is really hoping to get on the Cabo flights. I’m hoping for the buddy passes!

  6. Quincy Fennebresque

    I used to work with the CFO at Tiger Management in New York. My sense is New York City is next on Skybus’s radar screen. The really want to get into that market and figure people will drive from Manhattan to Stewart.

  7. Fly Skybus!

    My wife & I just returned from San Francisco. We flew out of Columbus to Oakland on 8/26 & returned 9/1. While we are not frequent fliers we do fly once to twice a year on average and have experience flying many different carriers. We did NOT pay $10 per seat…and we don’t feel slighted one bit. We WILL fly Skybus again, especially in light of the terrible costs of flying out of Cincinnati (our closest major airport).

    But we will fly Skybus again for reasons other than cost: they do a great job! Every member of the staff (in flight and on the ground) was polite, courteous, & friendly. Our outgoing & incoming flights were either on-time or early. The food we paid for was good (slightly overpriced BUT, considering the in flight staff is at the lower level of the pay scale…and is so darn pleasant…I don’t mind…their service was better than most of the “pros” we’ve run into from Delta, AA, United, etc.!). Yes..you also will get a sales pitch or two for the “trinkets, treats, and sparkly things” they sell during the flight…but it is NOT high-pressure or bothersome….unless you are one of those people who are annoyed at just about anything. And…please…if you are that type of person, please find some other airline anyway! In fact, the whole Skybus attitude & experience was quite refreshing.

    The tips you’ve probably already read about checking in & printing your boarding passes on-line, getting there early, & standing in line are worth following and remembering. If you can afford the extra $10 for priority seating…do it! If you can’t or you just don’t care where you sit on a flight…pocket that $10 and enjoy the ride. We don’t have young children, so standing in line is no big deal but…if you have children…you’d be wise to bring some entertaining stuff to keep them occupied while you wait.

    The planes are new or pretty darn near new. The seats are quite comfortable…and we ought to know after flying 4 1/2 hours one way twice! This is NOT some junky, bargain-basement carrier with crummy planes that may get you there alive. Skybus is…for the average, everyday human being…a great way to get to and from their destinations comfortable and safely.

    A few Oakland observations for you: be ready for a different type of airport than Pt. Columbus or Cincy or Indy when you de-plane in Oakland. In comparison, Oakland’s airport is less clean, less organized, and generally less friendly than any of the previously mentioned airports. If you take public transportation to get to San Francisco you will take the BART shuttle bus ($3.00 per person) to the Oakland Coliseum stop….change to one of the BART trains (catch the right one…not all of them go to San Fran!) which will vary in cost depending on where you plan to get off in S.F. (you will need to pay BEFORE you go up to the train platform). I strongly suggest you acquaint yourself with both the BART and MUNI systems BEFORE you go and TAKE A COPY OF THE TRANSIT MAPS WITH YOU for reference sake as they are not always as conveniently posted for review as they are in other cities (like Chicago, for example). Also, depending on the time of year you travel, be ready for a higher temperature in Oakland than in San Francisco…so don’t just pack clothes for one season if you are weather-sensitive.

    We gave Skybus a shot…and were pleasantly suprised. We think you will be, too!

  8. skybus is a disaster. there is nothing about my recent trip to recommend the experience. i paid more for my next trip to avoid ever dealing with skybus again. it’s just not worth it.

    the ticket agents clearly had no idea what they were doing, and they made no effort to hide this. they also made no effort to be friendly. i would have given them a lot of slack if they had suggested that they were a new airline trying to work out the kinks, but instead they just told me to go online if i wanted answers. (for the record, i did that, and have had no reply – three weeks later)

    i was sent back and forth between kiosks, ended up paying to check my bag twice since it never showed up in the online system (at home or the kiosk) and then was told there was nothing they could do about it. yet again, they told me to go online. i asked for a refund for the error on their part, and you got it – have heard nothing. it may seem like asking for a $10 baggage check refund is silly, but they charge for every little extra, so when they double charge, the flights start to get as expensive as a real airline.

    i won’t even go into the misery of the confusion at the gate, the late departure, the trouble getting our luggage, etc. when i first found out about skybus i told everyone, but now i’m telling everyone to avoid them. i didn’t save that much money in the long run, and it certainly wasn’t worth the misery of flying with them.

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