July - MSP News

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Delta Air Lines tentatively wins bid to provide service from MSP to Tokyo’s Haneda Airport

Minnesota businesses and residents received welcome news this week when the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) tentatively accepted Delta Air Lines’ bid to use one of five daytime slots available to US air carriers at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport to provide service from Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP).

According to the USDOT, Delta’s MSP proposal won the day, in part, because it “…provides an ideal opportunity to again address the Department’s goal of providing Haneda access from a Northern/Midwestern hub city with a substantial catchment area in the Midwestern and Eastern United States.” (A catchment area is the area from which a city, service or institution attracts a population that uses its services.)

Delta already operates a nonstop daily flight between MSP and Toyko’s Narita Airport. However, that airport is located further out from the city center. Haneda is only a 30-minute drive, making it a more desirable location for commercial air service. 

There have been concerns that the USDOT’s decision to add daytime slots for international service between the U.S. and Haneda could jeopardize the viability of the Narita flight. So a favorable ruling on Delta’s bid for a MSP-Haneda slot was considered critical.

Earlier this year, the Metropolitan Airports Commission (owner and operator of MSP), local businesses and congressional representatives all rallied in support of Delta’s request to service Haneda via MSP.

“The Transportation Department’s tentative decision, if maintained, is great news for the people and businesses of Minnesota, helping ensure we continue to have direct access to Asia,” said Brian Ryks, executive director and CEO of the Metropolitan Airports Commission. “I am very grateful to Minnesota’s Congressional delegation, Governor Dayton and the area business community for all their efforts to send a clear message to Washington, D.C.: this service is extremely important to Minnesota’s economy.”

For more about this historic opportunity, visit the USDOT website at: https://www.transportation.gov/fastlane/dot-proposes-us-airlines-and-cities-new-tokyo-haneda-routes

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Mobile Passport Control now available at MSP

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The Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced last month that mobile passport control (MPC) is now available at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP). The MAC owns and operates MSP airport and six smaller, general aviation airports in the Twin Cities metropolitan area. 

MPC was developed by Airports Council International-North America in partnership with CBP to expedite travelers’ arrivals into the United States. Eligible travelers can use the app to submit their passport information and customs declaration forms to CBP via a smartphone or tablet prior to arrival. Travelers opting to use the app do not have to complete a paper customs declaration. 

"The goal is to use technology to make the process of entering the country through MSP International Airport as simple and efficient as possible," said Brian Ryks, executive director and CEO. "For travelers without mobile devices, we have also installed 34 automated passport control kiosks in our International Arrivals areas. They work much the same way as mobile passport control but provide a printed rather than electronic receipt to expedite the entry process."

Through the app, travelers are prompted to create a profile that includes their passport information. Upon landing in the United States, they can complete the "New Trip" section by selecting their arrival airport and airline, taking a self-photo using their mobile device, and answering a series of customs declaration questions. Once travelers click "submit," they receive an electronic receipt with an encrypted code. From there, they'll bring the receipt, along with their passport and mobile device to a CBP officer to finalize the inspection process. 

MSP is the 13th U.S. airport to offer MPC. The service is also available at airports in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, New York, New Jersey, Orlando, San Francisco, San Jose and Seattle.

Additional information about MPC is available on CBP.gov. Android and iPhone users can download the Mobile Passport app for free from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store

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Sun Country announces seasonal service to West Palm Beach, FL

Sun Country Airlines announced last week it will begin seasonal service between Minneapolis-St. Paul International and West Palm Beach, FL (PBI) starting December 16, 2016 through April 16, 2017.

Why visit West Palm Beach? Learn more about this tropical locale and book your trip today at suncountry.com.

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Travel + Leisure readers say MSP is 5th best airport in North America

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Since 2013, Travel + Leisure has asked its readers to cast their votes for their favorite hubs across the world, rating airports on access, check-in/security, restaurants/bars, shopping, and design. 

This year, Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP) ranked 5th in that poll for North America, even while we have begun revamping of our concessions program and updating portions of Terminal 1-Lindbergh! 

Learn more about how MSP is re-imagining your airport experience at reimaginemsp.com

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Cheapflights ranks MSP 5th in affordability

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Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP) ranks 5th in flight affordability, according to a report published this week by Cheapflights, an online travel booking site. 

That’s not too surprising considering air carriers have added 16 new routes at MSP in 2016, including three operated by Spirit Airlines and two by Frontier – both of which market themselves as ultra-low airfare airlines. 

Four new, common-use gates, set to open at Terminal 2-Humphrey in October, will help ensure MSP has the capacity to accommodate even more new air service in the future.

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Something new for you

Five of 50 new stores and restaurants scheduled to open over the next nine months have opened at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.  

  • Como Park Essentials – Concourse C near Gate 22 - Como Park Essentials honors one of St. Paul’s most beloved and historic parks. Learn more about its history as you stock up on reading material, snacks, and more.
  • Estes News – Concourse E near Gate 3 - Estes Twin Cities News features made-in-Minnesota products, electronics, books, accessories and more. This new Estes replaces one that was located across the hall.
  • MSP Duty Free – Concourse D near Gate 3 – All travelers are welcome at MSP Duty Free. While some product categories are only available to international travelers (alcohol and cigarettes), much of what’s sold (think chocolate and perfume) can be purchased by all.
  • Johnston & Murphy – Airport Mall – This airport favorite has moved across the mall and added women’s clothing and accessories to its offerings - in addition to their always-coveted men’s footwear selection.

In addition, MSP Duty Free is now open at Terminal 2. This is Terminal 2’s first-ever duty free store. Heading out of the country on Sun Country, Condor or Icelandair? Be sure to stop by and be wowed!  

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Subway returning to Terminal 1

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Are you ready to eat fresh

Subway, one of America’s most popular sandwich chains, is scheduled to open in late August in Terminal1-Lindbergh’s Airport Mall food court. 

Subway’s Concourse G location closed last year to make way for an expanded duty free store, which is expected to open in October 2016.  

Subway is also at Terminal 2-Humphrey in the food court closest to Security Checkpoint 1. 

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Passenger and Operations Reports

Passenger levels totaled 3.15 million in May at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP), and the total year-to-date – now at 14.8 million --is up 3.7 percent compared to the same period of 2015.

The passenger volume is on pace to approach the annual record, set in 2005, when MSP served 37.6 million passengers.

The number of aircraft operations in May totaled 34,486, a 3.1 percent rise over the same month last year. Year-to-date, operations at MSP are up 1.4 percent from the same time last year. The number of operations had been declining for years as airlines worked to fill seats closer to capacity to fly more efficiently.

The increase in operations is tied to continuing growth in travel demand from airline passengers, reflecting the healthy regional economy.

Passenger and aircraft operations statistics can be found on the MSP Airport website under the “About MSP” section at http://www.mspairport.com/about-msp/statistics/operations-and-passenger-reports.aspx.

Each month’s reports are typically available by the 15th of the following month.

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