Wiregrass-area flyers will soon have another choice of departure times, as Dothan Regional Airport will soon add a fifth flight to Atlanta to its roster.

That’s good news for travelers, as well as the region’s business and military communities. Airport officials say 2019 was the best calendar year for boardings since 2002, with the 60,000-passenger figure marking an increase of at least 8%.

The additional flight validates a facility improvement initiative and can be attributed in part to the strength of the economy and Fort Rucker, which often moves personnel through the airport.

We’d add another factor — price.

For years, many travelers concerned about the cost of flying from Dothan would choose to begin their journeys in nearby cities, where the flights were cheaper, or they’d drive to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and start there.

While the price of airline tickets is maddeningly fluid, flying from Dothan is no longer an extravagance. In many cases, it’s the most economical.

We reviewed delta.com for the price of a basic seat of a round-trip ticket to Atlanta (Dothan’s only destination) for Feb. 26 with a return on March 1. The cost from Dothan ranged from $127.80 to $188.80, depending on time of day. From Tallahassee, Florida, a ticket ranged from $178.80 to $247.80; from Panama City, Florida, $187.80 to $196.80; from Montgomery, $178.80 to $288.80. Flying from Dothan would save anywhere from $51 to $161 on a single ticket, and travelers wouldn’t have to drive any farther than Midland City.

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