MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - 2012 was a hard year, according to leaders at Myrtle Beach International Airport, but those same leaders are predicting a turn around for 2013 with the arrival of new flights, and seats as the first big indicator.
Until June, MYR customers can choose from 52,585 arriving seats and 715 flights which have been added at the airport. This year there is already a 12 percent increase in the seats and 16 percent more flights from last year.
The airport's Marking Director, Kirk Lovell, said this increase shows the change in the economy with airlines looking to spend, "Passengers will have more opportunity to fly into the market where in the past years they've pulled capacity from this market and many others across the United States."
Officials with the airport have been making their case to air service carriers to add seats and flights, with nonstop services to destinations like Boston, Baltimore, and Philadelphia.
"They're seeing something here that makes them want to put the seats here and capitalize on it so it's a positive indicator for those passengers coming through the airport and into the market," said Lovell.
MYR had help in getting air carriers to add the service with Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday and Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce.
The Chamber of Commerce Spokesperson, Nora Battle explains how the partnership works, "What we bring to the table and what we offer is the ability to publicize and promote those flights in the markets where they are available so anytime we have non-stop service added you'll see a Myrtle Beach presence."
Battle describes the group as a three prong partnership to get visitors to Myrtle Beach.
These additional flights will run until June, so after that point it is unclear what will exactly happen with the flights and seats in the future.