MASSENA, N.Y. — Boutique Air is giving and taking away at Massena International Airport.
The airline will offer three direct daily flights to Boston beginning June 1, but is ending its flights to Albany and Baltimore.
Boutique Air has been serving Massena since April 2017, offering flights to Albany and Baltimore. Those flights will cease at the end of the month.
The company, headquartered in San Francisco, provides passenger air service to more than two dozen airports, including some out-of–the-way destinations such as Thief River Falls, Minnesota; Vernal, Utah; and Chadron, Nebraska.
Those airports, like Massena, qualify for federal assistance due to economic issues in the region they serve. That assistance subsidizes commercial flights to and from the airports.
Prices for the one-hour, 10-minute Massena-to-Boston flight range from $49 to $99, according to the airline’s website. It also shows flights taking off at 6:20 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and 4 p.m., with planes returning at 9:40 a.m., 3:20 p.m., and 7:25 p.m.
“With this move, passengers will be able to fly into a major city,” said CEO Shawn Simpson in a press release. “Not only is Boston a great destination to visit with many historic sites, it’s also a quicker trip to an international airport.”
The switch to three-a-day flights to Boston was supported by Massena’s government. “They came to us last winter and asked if would consider a change,” says Massena Town Supervisor Steve O’Shaughnessy.
Town leaders checked with a travel agent regarding connections. “She said that’s the way to go,” O’Shaughnessy says. Boston had better links to other destinations, he was told. “The whole reason is to get people in and out of Massena.”
So the town sent the U.S. Department of Transportation a letter supporting the change.
O’Shaughnessy says flights on Boutique Air are an improvement over those offered by the previous carrier. Boutique Air’s Swiss-made nine-seat planes are comfortable, he says, and pressurized. The previous airline’s planes had windows that could be opened by the pilot while high in the air. That could make it pretty cold for the passengers, he says.
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Photo credit: Boutique Air