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Waterloo airport adjusts flight schedule for holiday travel season

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WATERLOO, Iowa (KWWL) - The Waterloo Regional Airport is adjusting their flight times once again as the holiday travel season is right around the corner.

The current flight schedule has flights separated by nine hours, which isn't too convenient for passengers. The new schedule will bring the two available flights closer together in the day.

"Will give our passengers a much better chance to make the timely flight reservations to eventually get to their final destination during the holiday seasons," Waterloo Airport Director Keith Kaspari said.

The new schedule will have departures around 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. with arrivals from Chicago at around 11:45 a.m. and 2:45 p.m. The new times will go into effect November 2 and last through December 5. The December schedule is not yet set in stone.

Kaspari says travelers will have more flight options from Chicago after arriving there from Waterloo.

People traveling for work or to visit family for the holidays will ultimately have an easier time getting to their final destination.

"We're hoping that for thanksgiving and the Christmas holiday that we'll see a surge in passenger travel so we can end the year on a positive note," Kaspari said, "We've been working with American Airlines for several months now to get us a better schedule and it looks like they did just that, so we're very pleased that they've done that for ALO."

He says airports have had a challenging time recovering from COVID-19. For a number of months there was only one flight per day from the Waterloo Regional Airport. The second flight was recently added back onto the schedule in June.

In a normal year ALO would see up to 25,000 passengers flying out to Chicago, but in 2020, the year the pandemic hit, only about 7,000 travelers made their way through the airport. Kaspari says an airport the size of ALO can take 3 to 5 years to fully recover from the losses suffered.