ST. LOUIS - Lambert-St. Louis International Airport is seeing more flights this summer, heavier passenger loads and the debut of a new baggage system in both terminals.
Lambert is seeing a big boost in flights with new destinations and more flight options to existing destinations. As of this month, airlines are operating 253 daily non-stop flights to 62 destinations, an increase of 11 daily flights compared to May.
A majority of the additional flights are part of the seasonal boost of flights on Southwest Airlines, which is set to have its busiest summer ever in St. Louis. Southwest will offer more than 400,000 seats out of St. Louis in July.
In June, Frontier Airlines debuted two new destinations from St. Louis with service to Portland, Ore., and Trenton, N.J. Frontier is also adding non-stop service to San Francisco. American Airlines is also boosting its summer schedule with additional daily flights to Washington Reagan National and Chicago O'Hare.
Airlines are already reporting lower seat availability with the increase in demand for tickets this summer. With the spike in the number of passengers, the Transportation Security Administration reminds passengers they can have a significant impact on reducing wait times at security checkpoints. Get the latest TSA information here.
Lambert launched a new, inline baggage system that made its debut in Terminal 1 this spring is now operating in Terminal 2, which serves Southwest Airlines and Air Tran Airways. Passengers can now hand off their luggage at the ticket counter vs. having to transport bags to multiple explosive detection system machines that were installed in the ticketing areas after 9/11. A new 2,259-linear-foot conveyor system transports the luggage from the ticket counters to the airlines, with the bag screening machines built into the network and now out of public view.
The new $46 million in baggage system upgrades in both Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 will improve efficiencies in screening checked baggage and has upgraded the customer experience during the check-in process. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is covering 90 percent of the eligible project costs, or approximately $40 million, through grants and funding that were announced in 2010.
Here are details on additional summer flight activity from Lambert:
- American Airlines has added two additional daily non-stop flights to Washington Reagan National for a total of five daily flights.
- Southwest added a daily flight to Raleigh-Durham for a total of two daily flights.
- Southwest added a daily flight to: Boston for total of three daily flights, Denver for a total of four daily flights, Los Angeles for a total three daily flights, and Oklahoma City fora total of two daily flights. Southwest is also resuming seasonal service with one daily flight to Seattle.
- Southwest added a daily flight to Chicago Midway for total of 10 a day.
- American Airlines added an additional daily non-stop to Chicago O'Hare for a total of nine daily flights.
- Frontier Airlines began service to San Francisco and Trenton, N.J. - a new non-stop destination from Lambert.
- Frontier Airlines began service to Portland, Ore., a new non-stop destination from Lambert.