If San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport wants more flights, it will have to prove that it has enough travelers to support them.
That’s the purpose behind a nearly 30-question survey designed to gather information on the travel habits and needs of local business and leisure travelers.
The survey, sent out last week to the San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce, Economic Vitality Corp. and available on the airport’s Facebook page and website, will be used to help make the case that there’s demand for additional air service, said Kevin Bumen, airport manager.
The airport has been in discussions with an unspecified airline, which would be able to provide service to the Pacific Northwest, said Bumen, noting that a location like Seattle would offer good connections to Asia, Europe, as well as other points west.
“It will show them a very current and updated picture, a snapshot of community desires and demand in terms of where they’re going and the needs in the market,” he said. “We can look at the stats related to ticket sales, but that only shows what happened, not what we hope to have happen.”
Presenting a survey shows “the commitment of the community to weigh in on this topic and it gives us information to show how engaged the community is to support the flight,” Bumen added.
While the survey is targeted at an airline to service the Pacific Northwest, the data gathered will not be limited to just one carrier.
“We’ll use this info to keep talking with United about Denver,” he said. “The most apparent thing right now is the Pacific Northwest. But it’s not tailored to this one route. There are questions still about Sacramento and Salt Late City, so we’re not strictly focused on Seattle or Portland.”
The survey was posted last Thursday and will be up for about 30 days, Bumen said.