Bowling Green Regional Airport

Lisa Autry

Following a 44-year absence, commercial flights will soon take off from Bowling Green-Warren County Regional Airport.  Contour Airlines announced in May that it would begin offering flights out of Bowling Green to Atlanta, Georgia and Destin, Florida.  Airport Manager Rob Barnett discussed the service in this interview.

Autry: I know, for you, attracting commercial service has been a labor of love for the past eight years.  What do you think this will mean for the region?

Barnett: Access to air transportation is critical for a community to sustain and grow its economy and allow those visitors and business people to come into the community seamlessly rather than driving up the interstate an hour and 15 minutes to Nashville and dealing with parking and rental cars.  It's an incredible benefit to our community, not just Bowling Green and Warren County, but to our ten-county region, Barren River Area Development District.  We see this an an opportunity for a business traveler, but also for that leisure traveler.  We see this as a convenience and an economy boost for both types of travelers.

The first commercial flight out of Bowling Green in 44 years will take off later this month. 

Contour Airlines announced Thursday that the inaugural flight will be August 29 to Atlanta.  September 1 will mark the first flight to Destin. 

Once tickets went on sale, the first customer to book a trip was the Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce. 

"It's an economic development trip, said Chamber CEO Ron Bunch.  "We'll probably take some of our local elected officials here with our economic development staff from the Chamber, build on some of the relationships were already have, but demonstrate to them too that now there's a direct flight connecting the two that makes their life even easier when we show clients our great community."

Contour will offer flights to Atlanta seven days a week and to Destin two days a week.  The airline is offering introductory ticket prices of $59 each way to both destinations. 

A temporary terminal building is being constructed at the airport to accommodate passengers that will include a security and waiting area.

An airport official says Bowling Green is closing in on bringing commercial air service to the area with a route to Atlanta a possibility. Bowling Green Regional Airport manager Rob Barnett told The Daily News that five airlines at a recent conference expressed interest in flying from the southern Kentucky city to a hub in Atlanta.