Services at the Downtown Mobile airport are in full swing now after last week's inaugural flight. Yet a key piece to the airline's initial plan is missing. So the question that lingers is, Where is VIA Airlines?
"VIA has not provided service at the Regional Airport for the past two weeks. Last communication we had with them was about 2 weeks ago," Mobile Airport Authority President Chris Curry said.
VIA Airlines was a part of the airport's initial announcement about flights coming to the new terminal. Frontier Airlines has flights that go to Chicago and VIA was supposed to have flights to Orlando. Those VIA flights were expected to start a week ago on May 2.
"It is somewhat disappointing. Orlando is a destination that a lot of people in this region love to travel to, but at the same time when we recruit an airline to come into this market we expect a certain level of service and if VIA cannot provide that certain level of service, I would prefer that they not serve the market," Curry added.
Curry said they've made multiple attempts over the past 2 weeks by contacting the airline over the phone and through email, but still no response.
He added that VIA has had several cancellations throughout the past few months at Mobile Regional Airport. He said he's heard there are similar issues at Birmingham's airport.
Reports suggest VIA's problem may be a shortage of pilots, Curry said that's not surprising but no excuse for the airline not communicating. He added there could be consequences, should the airline resume services.
"We are a public airport so we must provide an airline who wants to serve an airport, the opportunity to serve.we provide a certain level of incentives whether its marketing support or whether its waiver of fees to come into the market, we will sever those ties with VIA," Curry explained.
VIA has flights available for next week on their website for purchase, but consumers should beware.
We reached out to VIA Airlines today but we haven't heard back.
Curry is directing any passengers with complaints about the airline to call them at (407) 499-4992 or on their website by clicking here.