Can the Minot International Airport handle more daily flights and more passenger boardings??We'll soon find out.
Delta Airlines announced last week that it will have eight daily departures from Minot to Minneapolis during its summer schedule, which runs from June to Labor Day. Delta also announced that beginning March 4, it will bring an Airbus A-319 to Minot, a 126-seat aircraft.
With the additions and changes, Minot will soon have 528 seats available each day on Delta.
But it will be a challenge for the airport to handle even more passengers and traffic daily. With the increases announced by Delta, airport officials are suggesting passengers arrive at the airport even earlier to make sure they have enough time to get through security. The screened passenger waiting area, which has been expanded and renovated in recent years, is still often too small to handle current passenger traffic. The facility's parking lot is already way beyond capacity, with vehicles parked virtually anywhere and everywhere possible in the general vicinity of the terminal building. There's a study in the works to decide if Minot should build a completely new, larger terminal, or add on to the current terminal, and the parking problem won't likely be solved until that decision is made.
While we welcome the opportunity from Delta to better serve Minot and the area, the changes will bring very real challenges to an airport facility and staff already facing significant difficulties associated with booming business.