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Direct Flights To Los Angeles Coming To Missoula And Kalispell

A new tax on airplane fuel is nearing a final vote in the Montana Legislature.
United Airlines will offer direct flights next year from Missoula and Kalispell to Los Angeles.

United Airlines will offer direct flights next year from Missoula and Kalispell to Los Angeles. The new seasonal daily service begins in early June.

Missoula International Airport Deputy Director Brian Ellestad says it will be a real boon for Montana.

"It brings in tourism to Montana and gives our folks a great connection to California," he said.

Local officials first met with United two or three months ago with the hopes of convincing the airline to expand its service in Montana.

Ellestad says the company knows a good opportunity when it sees one.

"Montana's getting discovered by a lot of traffic in the summer to visit the beauty of Montana," he says.

United’s direct-to-L.A. service starts June 7 and runs until August 20.

"That’s when Californians want to come to Montana," Ellestad says.

Glacier Park International airport director Rob Ratkowski says the direct flight drastically reduces travel times to the west coast, while the flight’s arrival time will make it possible for travelers to more easily catch same day connections out of LAX.

Customers can book flights immediately to plan ahead for the summer.

O’Brien first landed at Montana Public Radio three decades ago as a news intern while attending the University of Montana School of Journalism. His first career job out of school was covering the 1995 Montana Legislature. When the session wrapped up, O’Brien was fortunate enough to land a full-time position at the station as a general assignment reporter. Feel free to drop him a line at
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