Even though Austin Bergstrom is an international airport, for many years the only other country travelers could fly to directly was Mexico. When nonstop flights to London were initiated by British Airways in March 2014, that seemed to open the door for more direct flights to Europe.
Condor Airlines, which has operated in Germany sine the 1950s, has announced that it will offer nonstop flights from ABIA to Frankfurt beginning in June 2016. At least for the first year, the service is slated to run seasonally through September 1.
You’ll have to plan your trip, however, since the nonstop flights will only run twice a week, on Mondays and Thursdays, according to airline officials. Departures are scheduled to leave Austin at 7:55 p.m. and arrive in Frankfurt at 1:10 p.m. the next day. Flights back to Austin will leave Frankfurt at 1:25 p.m. local time and arrive at 5:55 central time.
Germany currently represents one of Austin’s top overseas markets with both business and leisure visitors coming to the city in increasing numbers. “New options for air service bring new business, jobs and tourism to Austin,” Mayor Steve Adler said in a written statement.
ABIA is one of the fastest growing mid-size airports in the country, so it’s not surprising that new flights and routes have been added. Other nonstop flights launched during the past year include Seattle, Portland, Las Vegas, Chicago, and Toronto. New carriers include Condor, Allegiant Air, British Airways, Air Canada, Texas Sky/Public Charters, and Branson Air Express.
Increased traffic at the airport has necessitated the opening of a new six-lane security checkpoint and new concourse connection to the east ticket lobby, which has been functional for more than a month. Additionally, a five-story rental car facility with short-term public parking is in the works with plans to open in October. Last year more than 10.7 million travelers made their way through the Austin airport; that’s a seven percent increase over the previous year.
The easy-in, easy-out experience many of us have loved at the airport is already changing with the increase in routes and airlines. On the plus side, additional direct flights could mean less hassle and lost time on layovers for Austin travelers.