Breeze Airways will start offering nonstop flights to Fort Myers,...

Breeze Airways will start offering nonstop flights to Fort Myers, Florida, starting Oct. 2, officials said.  Credit: Newsday/Alejandra Villa Loarca

Breeze Airways is adding a new destination to Florida from Long Island MacArthur Airport starting early October, Islip Town officials said Tuesday.

The low-cost carrier, which began flying out of the Islip Town-owned airport in 2022, will add year-round service to Fort Myers from the Ronkonkoma airport on Oct. 2, officials said. The nonstop flights will operate on Wednesdays and Saturdays. 

The route is the ninth offered by the airline out of MacArthur and the third to Florida, with other Breeze destinations to the state including Jacksonville and Vero Beach.

“MacArthur Airport customers made it clear that they want, need, and will support year-round flight options so they may conveniently travel between Long Island and Fort Myers,” Islip Supervisor Angie Carpenter said in a statement.

Promotional fares between Long Island and Fort Myers will start at $89 one-way if purchased by July 1 for travel by Jan. 7, officials said. 

The added service comes on the heels of the announcement that JetBlue will start flying out of MacArthur in October, with services to Orlando, Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beach in Florida.

Florida is the most popular destination out of New York airports, including MacArthur, town officials have said.

Around 1.2 million passengers arrived and departed from MacArthur Airport in 2023, officials said. 

Five of the top 10 destinations out of MacArthur are in Florida, with Orlando the most popular by far between April 2023 and March 2024, according to the most recent data available from the federal Bureau of Transportation. Fort Myers was the sixth most popular destination for passengers out of Islip during the same period.

Before JetBlue, Breeze Airways was the airline to most recently add service from Islip, with flights starting in 2022. JetBlue founder David Neeleman launched the carrier in 2018 and it began flying in 2021.

"If we can get everybody to start using this airport locally, there will just be more and more flights, more and more destinations, and better things to come," said Jim Smith, co-founder and vice president of corporate real estate and airport development at Breeze Airways.

Other airlines that fly out of MacArthur include Frontier and Southwest Airlines. American Airlines dropped flights out of MacArthur in September 2022 due to pilot shortages.

The Town of Islip has invested more than $100 million into the airport since 2016, including a ground transportation center, a walkway and a fire rescue building.

The massive Midway Crossing proposal, clocking in at around $2.8 billion, is also expected to build a walkway connecting a new MacArthur air terminal to Ronkonkoma’s Long Island Rail Road station. The pending project calls for 2.7 million square feet of new construction, including a convention center, a 300-room hotel and health sciences facilities.

Local politicians and business leaders have touted the airport's growth as a boon to the area, including Matt Cohen, president and CEO of the Long Island Association, a nonprofit business organization. In a statement, he said that "the continued expansion of MacArthur Airport will have a ripple effect through the entire regional economy."

"It’s a testament to the hard work of Supervisor Carpenter and the airport team to capitalize on the full potential of this significant asset," he said.

Some passengers at MacArthur on Tuesday afternoon said they're happy for more options, although Fort Myers wasn't somewhere they planned to travel to soon.

"Fort Myers really wouldn't interest us," said Donna Hoffman of Patchogue, who was traveling with her husband, Charlie, to a gymnastics meet for their granddaughter. "We have other destinations we'd like to go, like Orlando."

Tim and Kathleen Monzert, who moved to Tampa from East Islip a year and a half ago, are back in town for their granddaughter's high school graduation in Miller Place. As the couple waited for their daughter to pick them up from the airport, Kathleen said: "I won't complain about options."

Breeze Airways is adding a new destination to Florida from Long Island MacArthur Airport starting early October, Islip Town officials said Tuesday.

The low-cost carrier, which began flying out of the Islip Town-owned airport in 2022, will add year-round service to Fort Myers from the Ronkonkoma airport on Oct. 2, officials said. The nonstop flights will operate on Wednesdays and Saturdays. 

The route is the ninth offered by the airline out of MacArthur and the third to Florida, with other Breeze destinations to the state including Jacksonville and Vero Beach.

“MacArthur Airport customers made it clear that they want, need, and will support year-round flight options so they may conveniently travel between Long Island and Fort Myers,” Islip Supervisor Angie Carpenter said in a statement.

Promotional fares between Long Island and Fort Myers will start at $89 one-way if purchased by July 1 for travel by Jan. 7, officials said. 

The added service comes on the heels of the announcement that JetBlue will start flying out of MacArthur in October, with services to Orlando, Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beach in Florida.

Florida is the most popular destination out of New York airports, including MacArthur, town officials have said.

Around 1.2 million passengers arrived and departed from MacArthur Airport in 2023, officials said. 

Five of the top 10 destinations out of MacArthur are in Florida, with Orlando the most popular by far between April 2023 and March 2024, according to the most recent data available from the federal Bureau of Transportation. Fort Myers was the sixth most popular destination for passengers out of Islip during the same period.

Before JetBlue, Breeze Airways was the airline to most recently add service from Islip, with flights starting in 2022. JetBlue founder David Neeleman launched the carrier in 2018 and it began flying in 2021.

"If we can get everybody to start using this airport locally, there will just be more and more flights, more and more destinations, and better things to come," said Jim Smith, co-founder and vice president of corporate real estate and airport development at Breeze Airways.

Other airlines that fly out of MacArthur include Frontier and Southwest Airlines. American Airlines dropped flights out of MacArthur in September 2022 due to pilot shortages.

The Town of Islip has invested more than $100 million into the airport since 2016, including a ground transportation center, a walkway and a fire rescue building.

The massive Midway Crossing proposal, clocking in at around $2.8 billion, is also expected to build a walkway connecting a new MacArthur air terminal to Ronkonkoma’s Long Island Rail Road station. The pending project calls for 2.7 million square feet of new construction, including a convention center, a 300-room hotel and health sciences facilities.

Local politicians and business leaders have touted the airport's growth as a boon to the area, including Matt Cohen, president and CEO of the Long Island Association, a nonprofit business organization. In a statement, he said that "the continued expansion of MacArthur Airport will have a ripple effect through the entire regional economy."

"It’s a testament to the hard work of Supervisor Carpenter and the airport team to capitalize on the full potential of this significant asset," he said.

Some passengers at MacArthur on Tuesday afternoon said they're happy for more options, although Fort Myers wasn't somewhere they planned to travel to soon.

"Fort Myers really wouldn't interest us," said Donna Hoffman of Patchogue, who was traveling with her husband, Charlie, to a gymnastics meet for their granddaughter. "We have other destinations we'd like to go, like Orlando."

Tim and Kathleen Monzert, who moved to Tampa from East Islip a year and a half ago, are back in town for their granddaughter's high school graduation in Miller Place. As the couple waited for their daughter to pick them up from the airport, Kathleen said: "I won't complain about options."

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