Low-cost Philly airline expands local service |

Low-cost Philly airline expands local service

USA 3000 Airlines is expanding its limited Pittsburgh service by launching nonstop flights to Florida in December that start at $59 one way, the carrier said Monday.

Based in suburban Philadelphia, USA 3000 Airlines also will base between 50 and 60 workers at Pittsburgh International Airport, said Trevor Sadler, director of contracts and services. Those workers represent new hiring, which will begin within the next two months.

USA 3000 Airlines, which serves about 40 cities, began operating in December 2001, with chartered flights between Philadelphia and Cancun. The carrier provides mainline service from Pittsburgh to Cancun and to the Dominican Republic, which it initiated in May 2002.

The airline will begin nonstop service to St. Petersburg, Fort Lauderdale and Fort Myers with a 168-seat jet liner. The year-round flights begin on Dec. 19 on alternating days of the week.

“USA 3000 will be offering the only service from Pittsburgh to St. Petersburg and we expect their outstanding service and low fares will increase demand to Ft. Myers and Fort Lauderdale,” said Allegheny County Airport Authority Executive Director Kent George.

USA 3000 Airlines is owned by Chairman and CEO John Mullin. He also owns Apple Vacations travel agency.

“Pittsburgh is a city where our related company determined to increase market share,” Sadler said.

The Florida flights will feature fresh snacks, nine music channels, first-run movies and an array of magazines.

The airline has no Pittsburgh workers now because it bases no planes here. But come December, USA 3000 Airlines will base an Airbus 320 jet liner here.

“The local economy also will enjoy the benefit of new jobs as we establish increased operations,” Sadler said.

Sadler said the airline expects to hire locally about 10 pilots, as many as 35 other crew members, plus aircraft maintenance and station managers. Interested candidates should e-mail their resumes to this e-mail address: [email protected] .

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