Punta Gorda Airport in Charlotte County is tiny compared with neighboring airfields in Tampa, Sarasota and Fort Myers.
But the little airport recently got big recognition from one of the most profitable airlines operating today: Allegiant.
Allegiant recently named Punta Gorda Airport as the winner of this year's Low Cost Destination Airport Award. Punta Gorda Airport Executive Director Gary Quill accepted the award at the airline's airport conference in Las Vegas recently.
Allegiant currently serves 11 “destination airports” and the company recently announced plans to establish a new base of operations at Punta Gorda Airport starting June 27. It cited the airport's low operating costs, such as fuel and ground handling.
Allegiant, which specializes in flying people from small cities to leisure destinations, currently provides service from Punta Gorda to Greenville, S.C., Knoxville, Tenn., and Lexington, Ky. This summer, the airline also plans to fly from Punta Gorda to Fort Wayne, Ind.; Niagara Falls, N.Y.; Peoria, Ill.; and South Bend, Ind.