Lafayette Regional Airport passenger numbers up; federal money coming


LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) Things are looking good at the Lafayette Regional Airport.

Executive Director Steven Picou says passenger numbers are returning to levels not seen since before the pandemic.

“Probably the last three weeks, a significant increase, where most of the days we are at pre-Covid and exceeding pre-Covid passenger counts,” said Picou.

More passengers mean more business for other airport services like parking, food, and rental cars.

There were several people flying into and out of Lafayette on Wednesday.

The public’s confidence in air travel appears to be returning.

“My confidence in flying has increased with the vaccine,” said Trisha Potter, of Kansas. “I have gotten the Moderna vaccine. I’ve gotten both. I did that so there would be no trouble with me flying.

“Personally, I have completed my Covid vaccinations,” said Hershell Ball, of North Carolina. “With the masks and other protocols people seem to be following well overall, my confidence is pretty high.”

The airport is also getting $2.8 million dollars in federal money for Covid relief. Picou says the airport commission hasn’t decided on how to use the money, but he says it can be used for cleaning and to make up for lost revenue in 2020.

“Is it going to be enough? That’s a hard question to answer, but it’s a step in the right direction to help the airport with some of our expenses and operating costs,” said Picou.

The new airport terminal, currently under construction, will double the space at the airport, from 60,000 square feet to 120,000 square feet. It’s set to open before the end of the year.

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