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Southwest Airlines arriving in Grand Rapids could affect air travel in the entire region

GRAND RAPIDS, MI (WTVB) - Airlines come and airlines go, but the arrival of the discount carrier Southwest Airlines at Ford International in Grand Rapids could have a significant impact on air travel in the entire region. Billionaire Dick DeVos, who founded the Regional Air Alliance says he has been working 7-years to achieve this goal because it will bringing potential investors into West Michigan and the same can be said for tourism. The first flight arrived yesterday.  The airline will fly daily to four hubs, Baltimore, St. Louis, Orlando and Denver, with connections to 70 other cities.

Airport Director Brian Ryks says anyone who wants to remain a player in the market will have to bring down prices too because there will be so much additional competition. The attraction with the landing of Southwest will likely not only draw passengers away from other airlines in Grand Rapids, but from other airports around the state as well.