Elizabethtown, Kentucky (July 9, 2009) – The Elizabethtown Airport Board today announced that the recently launched Partnership for Central Kentucky Airline Service Travel Bank pledge campaign has reached its first milestone: the first “five figure” pledge in the amount of $10,000 from the Fort Knox Federal Credit Union.
For Immediate Release
Partnership for Central Kentucky Airline Service Travel Bank
Travel Bank Campaign Off to Good Start;
Program Achieves Milestone with First ‘Five Figure’
Pledge from the Fort Knox Federal Credit Union
Elizabethtown, Kentucky (July 9, 2009) – The Elizabethtown Airport Board today announced that the recently launched Partnership for Central Kentucky Airline Service Travel Bank pledge campaign has reached its first milestone: the first “five figure” pledge in the amount of $10,000 from the Fort Knox Federal Credit Union. The Travel Bank is a strategy which is designed to provide a revenue guarantee to the first airline which confirms its intent to provide scheduled passenger airline service to the Elizabethtown Regional Airport (EKX).
In announcing the pledge, Fort Knox Federal Credit Union President/CEO Bill Rissel stated: “The Credit Union is pleased to demonstrate its support not only for the Travel Bank but also for the development of scheduled passenger airline service in Central Kentucky with this pledge. We view the development of airline service at EKX as one of this community’s most important goals.”
“Revenue guarantee programs are an important part of any community’s strategy to develop or expand new passenger airline service,” said Luke Schmidt, President of L.B. Schmidt & Associates, LLC, and consultant to the Elizabethtown Airport Board. “This strategy has been implemented successfully in other markets and we believe that it can be successful here.”
Joe Yates, Chairman of the Elizabethtown Airport Board stated “The pledge of the Fort Knox Federal Credit Union is indicative of the support that is growing for passenger airline service at EKX throughout Central Kentucky. New airline service will make air travel easier for the hundreds of thousands of passengers who currently use other airports that are further away and cost more to use in terms of driving costs and parking. EKX will offer free parking at the door for its passengers when service starts.”
Potential users of passenger airline travel from throughout the 24-county region are being asked to make a pledge to the Travel Bank. The total amount of the pledges raised will be passed on to potential airlines as EKX’s revenue guarantee for the first two years of service.
The pledges made by businesses, industries, professionals, individuals, etc., will be payable only after the first airline confirms its intent to start service to EKX. Pledges will be payable in a lump sum or in two to four payments over 12 months following the date of confirmation airline service (which will coincide with the time required to build the new passenger terminal).
Once service starts to EKX, those companies and individuals who have made a pledge can get their money back by simply purchasing a ticket, flying to or from EKX and providing “proof of travel” to the Travel Bank. Once the proof of travel has been submitted, the Travel Bank will issue a check in the amount of the cost of airline ticket, up to the amount of the pledge. The net benefit of the Travel Bank will be:
- EKX will provide a meaningful revenue guarantee program to the first airline to confirm service
- The region will demonstrate its support for air service by participating in the Travel Bank
- The program will encourage Travel Bank participants to use the new service
- The airline will fill seats on its planes
- And, in the end, Travel Bank participants will get their money back once they fly to/from EKX
The travel bank concept is designed to put passengers “in the seats” by encouraging regional air travelers to purchase tickets and use the new service. The travel bank approach also provides the airline with a golden opportunity to showcase its new service and to promote all of the travel options which will become available to Central Kentucky air travelers.
The Elizabethtown Airport Board is a not for profit organization which operates the municipal airport in Elizabethtown, Kentucky. Elizabethtown Regional Airport (EKX) began operations in 1982 as a general aviation airport and is currently engaged in efforts to restore commercial airline service to the field. EKX includes a 6,000 foot long runway which is “regional jet ready” with complete general aviation services. An Instrument Landing System (ILS) (localizer) has been installed which further enhances safety and increases the airport’s all-weather operational capacity. EKX plans to build a passenger terminal should commercial airline service be restored.