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XNA proposing to use grant funds to add nonstop flights to San Francisco

Northwest Arkansas National Airport (XNA) said money from a federal grant may be used to bring back nonstop flights to San Francisco.

HIGHFILL, Ark. — Northwest Arkansas National Airport (XNA) said money from a federal grant could be used to bring back nonstop flights to San Francisco.

The funding is from a $500,000 grant from the US Department of Transportation's Small Community Air Service Development program (SCASD). 

"Losing nonstop flights to San Francisco in early 2020 was one of the main setbacks we saw due to COVID-19, and we're determined to get it re-established because it's so important to our business community," said Andrew Branch, the airport's chief business development officer. 

"What we actually saw when it did operate is people loved having the nonstop each day, and it provided value to both the business travelers and the leisure travelers who wanted to get to the Bay Area."

When the nonstop flight to San Francisco was taken away, XNA says it saw the number of people flying to the region "fall dramatically." The route averaged 80 passengers a day in 2019, but just 26 people a day made that trip last year, according to a report from an XNA consultant.

XNA is excited to receive a $500k grant under the Small Community Air Service Development Program. The grant can be used...

Posted by XNA Northwest Arkansas National Airport on Thursday, August 11, 2022

XNA went on to clarify the grant can be used as "an incentive for Breeze Airways to offer service to San Francisco (SFO)." No agreement as of Aug. 11 has been made between XNA and Breeze and no official announcement has been made.

"We will be working in the coming months with Breeze to hopefully bring this route to XNA."

RELATED: Federal grants support 2 airport terminal projects in Arkansas

RELATED: Arkansas airports receiving nearly $10 million in federal grants

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