By Bob Weiss, Travel Contributor

BOSTON (CBS) – Two airports in New England will get new flights this fall.

Allegiant will begin service on October 25 at Pease International Airport in Portsmouth, New Hampshire; and two weeks later, on November 7, JetBlue will inaugurate flights from the Worcester Airport.

Both start-ups will offer service to Orlando, Florida.

Allegiant is a fast-growing, ultra-low-cost airline with a number of add-on fees for bags and service on board its flights.   Pease officials reported strong demand for flights through the end of November and they are nearly sold out.

The last scheduled flights at Pease ended on April 4, 2008 when Skybus pulled out of the New Hampshire market. The rising cost of fuel at $115 a barrel made the business model of the airline unworkable despite a weekly load factor of over 90 percent.

In addition to Allegiant’s low fares, Pease offers free parking at its Portsmouth location.

In the last decade, Allegiant has grown to serving 14 vacation destinations and 99 communities nationwide. At one time Allegiant flew into the Worcester Airport but the airline pulled out in 2006.

The JetBlue expansion of flights to Fort Lauderdale and Orlando, Florida at the Worcester Airport is an extension of their success at Logan Airport where they are the number one carrier. Both airports are operated by the Massachusetts Port Authority.

Other major airports where JetBlue operates in New England include: Hartford, Portland and Providence with seasonal service to Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket.

Massport is planning a co-op advertising program with media in the central Massachusetts community. And Pease is planning a similar effort with Allegiant. Both airlines offer air, hotel and car rental package deals through their web sites.

The success of these new airline routes and winter travel may have a lot to do with a major change in Boston traffic patterns scheduled to start at the end of the year.

The Callahan Tunnel, connecting downtown and Logan Airport, will be shut down for about three months of repairs.

Passengers will need to allow extra time to arrive and get through security.

Bob Weiss reports on business travel on Mondays at 5:55 a.m. on WBZ NewsRadio 1030.


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