The first non-stop Frontier Airlines flight from Denver arrived in Memphis today around 1:15 p.m. Some of the passengers poured out of the plane wearing Elvis-style sunglasses given out on the flight, and even the pilot donned Elvis shades and waved to reporters from the cockpit.
Frontier Airlines had a presence at Memphis International Airport years ago, but it couldn't compete with Northwest Airlines and eventually pulled service. Now the low-cost carrier is back offering non-stop flights to its Denver hub.
Frontier originally announced they'd start with flights four days a week leaving from the Memphis airport, but reception has been so good, they've already announced plans to expand that service to seven days a week.
Frontier is considered a leisure airline and an ultra-low-cost carrier, meaning passengers opt for cheaper tickets with few frills (such as no free drinks, etc.), and they can choose to pay for as many extra services as they wish.
"We will bring the lowest fare into the city we fly into," said Frontier director of sales Andrea Blankenship during a quick welcoming ceremony before the first flight arrived today.
"We are reinventing ourselves as an [origination and departure] airport, and Frontier offers a tremendous product," said Memphis Shelby-County Airport Authority president Scott Brockman.
Read more about the airport's transition from a hub to an O&D airport in the next issue of the Memphis Flyer.