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After less than a year of service, Ravn Alaska halts flights to Dillingham again

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Tyler Thompson/KDLG
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Ravn Alaska is no longer flying between Anchorage and Dillingham. The carrier halted operations to Dillingham on Jan. 3, leaving Bristol Bay’s main travel hub with just one air carrier providing service to and from Alaska’s largest city.

Ravn’s commercial managing director, Tina Hanley, said the airline didn’t have enough passengers booking its three scheduled Anchorage flights each week.

“We were not getting the support necessary to keep the flights viable. So we just didn't have the acceptable loads,” she said.

Ravn’s abrupt departure leaves Dillingham with just one year-round statewide carrier: Alaska Airlines. The Seattle-based airline will continue to operate its daily connection to Anchorage.

Hanley said Ravn's Dillingham-based employees have been offered positions elsewhere and there will be no layoffs.

A lot has changed for Dillingham’s regular commercial flights in recent years. PenAir filed for bankruptcy in 2017. The next year, a Ravn affiliate bought PenAir’s assets for more than $12 million.

Then, in the spring of 2020, Ravn also filed for bankruptcy. Alaska Airlines stepped in to offer year-round service to Dillingham.

Last spring, a rebooted Ravn under new ownership and management started flying to the community again. But that, too, was short-lived. Hanley said the airline started rethinking its operations there in November, as it struggled to fill flights.

“And then didn't see any market improvement and made the decision in early December to start with the removal of service,” she said.

Hanley said Ravn's seasonal flights from Anchorage to King Salmon are still planned this summer.

Contact the author at izzy@kdlg.org or 907-842-2200.

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