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Indy to Paris: One Year Later, Still Going Strong

Indiana’s first nonstop transatlantic flight ‘fully meeting our expectations’

INDIANAPOLIS (May 24, 2019) – One year ago today the Indianapolis International Airport (IND) opened a new chapter in its history, as Delta Air Lines Flight 500 took off for Paris, France, establishing the first year-round, nonstop transatlantic air service to Europe.

“The inaugural flight marked the first time Hoosiers had a nonstop flight right into the heart of Europe’s business and leisure travel epicenter,” said Mario Rodriguez, executive director of the Indianapolis Airport Authority. “A year later, the flight’s attraction is fully meeting our expectations, with more than 1,000 passengers on average flying between Indianapolis and Paris weekly.”

In fact, Delta has added a Monday flight to Paris in September, bringing the total flights per week to six in the early fall. In September, flights from Indy to Paris are scheduled to fly Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Overall, the route's frequency increases during the spring, summer and fall months, reaching peak daily service throughout the summer season.

Passenger traffic in 2018 jumped significantly at the Indy airport, up 7% over 2017. Airport officials credit the increase to a number of factors, but international travel was among the top contributors.

“In 2018 alone, international passenger traffic increased by 77 percent, which was more than 60,000 international passengers,” said Rodriguez.

The Paris route opened up convenient travel to over 900 foreign-owned businesses that call Indiana home and work with European business power centers, like Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru (India), Rome, Florence and Venice (Italy), Frankfurt and Munich (Germany), Budapest, Athens, Copenhagen, London, Barcelona, Cairo and Geneva. The flight also opened up transatlantic leisure travel directly to Paris and connections to some of the most-famed tourist destinations in the world – such as such Amsterdam, Athens, Barcelona, Berlin, Florence, London, Rome and Venice.

More international and domestic travel opportunities lie ahead as the Indy airport and its city, state and tourism partners prepare to host the 2020 Routes Americas convention next year.

"It can take years to bring new routes and new airlines to our market,” said Marsha Stone, IAA senior director of commercial enterprise. “But Routes Americas, which is like an aviation industry business incubator, will position Indianapolis right at the center of crucial relationships with airline decision makers that can help expedite and compress that timeline.”

Indianapolis is only the third U.S. city to host Routes Americas, with previous conferences held in Denver and Las Vegas. Past locations also include Mexico, Peru, Dominican Republic, Bahamas, Colombia, El Salvador, Puerto Rico and Ecuador, and Quebec City, Canada. The Routes Americas conference will showcase Indianapolis to leaders in the aviation industry, reinforcing Indiana’s accessibility and one-of-a-kind amenities to both international and domestic attendees. The conference will be hosted in Indianapolis in February 2020.