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Allegiant Air’s newest nonstop flight takes off for Phoenix/Mesa on Thursday.

The Phoenix/Mesa route is scheduled to depart the Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport on Thursday nights and return on Sundays. The seasonal service will continue through mid-April.

The new service is the latest expansion by the airline that’s gradually built up its XNA offerings over a 10-year period.

Allegiant Air started nonstop from XNA to Los Angeles in May 2009 followed by the launch of service to Las Vegas the following month. The airline’s expansions have been consistent ever since.

The low-cost carrier has sold flights to more than 450,000 XNA passengers traveling Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Orlando/Sanford, Nashville and Destin.

Allegiant accounts for 5-9% of all XNA travelers each year. It’ll be near 7% in 2019.

Some of the airline’s passengers take advantage of its seasonal routes. In addition to Phoenix/Mesa, Allegiant offers seasonal service to Nashville (returning in February) and Los Angeles (returning in June).

Flights to Destin, which first took off in June 2018, started out as seasonal but changed to year-round service in 2019 based on their popularity.

In recent years, the airline has expanded to new destinations, including Newark, Baltimore/Washington, New Orleans, Austin and Oakland. It’s offering flights to just a handful of airports from those cities.

Pictured at the top: Daniel Meier, a route planner for Allegiant Air, announced the airline’s decision to fly to Destin at a Feb. 2018 news conference at the Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport.

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