The Desert Sun’s Melissa Daniels reports that Southwest Airlines will offer flights between Palm Springs International Airport and Oakland, Phoenix and Denver beginning November 15th. Routes and pricing are as follows:  

  •         One-way nonstop between Palm Springs and Oakland (twice daily in each direction), as low as $49
  •         One-way nonstop between Palm Springs and Phoenix (three times daily in each direction), as low as $49
  •         One-way nonstop between Palm Springs and Denver (once daily in each direction), as low as $79 

The new flights are welcomed since Coachella Valley tourism officials are looking to boost fall leisure travel as business conventions and large-scale meetings are prohibited in California for the foreseeable future due to the coronavirus pandemic. The Greater Palm Springs Convention and Visitors Bureau estimated the region has had more than 400,000 room nights canceled in 2020, leading to a loss of $172 million in room revenue. They also estimated that over 26,000 hospitality workers or roughly half of all the hospitality workers in the Coachella Valley are unemployed. 

Statewide, the Visit California tourism marketing agency has allocated $65.3 million to spend on marketing programs through June 30 of next year to entice travelers to come to California. But consumer sentiment on travel is still mixed: Tourism market research firm Destination Analysts found in an Oct. 4 survey that 56.5% of U.S. travelers are in a “ready to travel” state of mind. However, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention still advises against traveling, noting that staying home is the best way to prevent the virus' spread. As safety precautions, Southwest officials say they're keeping middle seats open through Nov. 30 to help ensure physical distancing on their flights and that its passengers are also required to wear face coverings. 

To read Melissa Daniels original article, courtesy of The Desert Sun, please visit:

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