Before the end of this year, a new fleet of airplanes is expected to be flying out of Carlsbad's McClellan-Palomar Airport.
The first of two California Pacific Airlines airplanes was delivered Friday just before noon, and will soon be jetting off to Las Vegas, Oakland, Phoenix, Sacramento, San Jose and Cabo San Lucas.
California Pacific's arrival at the airport is highly anticipated by over a million North County residents, for whom the trip to San Diego's Lindbergh field can sometimes last more than two hours.
United Express is the only regularly-scheduled commercial airline flying out of Palomar. The airline only offers flights to Los Angeles.
Local businessman Ted Vallas has spearheaded the plan to broaden the airport's reach.
California Pacific Airlines, was the last of the many business ventures 91-year-old Vallas will have tackled in his lifetime.
“Parking is easy, the cost to park is a lot less expensive,” said Callaway Golf Chief Financial Officer Brad Holiday in a previous article.
Holiday said the North County airline can be good for families and business.
“If you have to drag kids through a big airport, it’s sometimes easier if you have a good solution or good option in terms of an airline to take you place,” he said.
Vallas said the new venture needs only 15 percent of the people traveling through Lindbergh Field to satisfy the first two phases of the operation.
“When you add the other savings that [travelers] would have, we would not only compete but we would be much better off,” Vallas said.
In just four years, Vallas plans to fly 20 aircraft to 25 cities.
The first flight for California Pacific Airlines is scheduled for October 15.