MKE in the News
MSNBC.com contributor and travel expert Harriet Baskas endorses Milwaukee's Mitchell Airport (MKE) over Chicago's O'Hare as a more manageable and easily accessible airport.The article goes on to recommend not only alternative airports, but their respective cities as an alternative to big-city vacations. Titling the section "Milwaukee's best," Baskas suggests activities (via Visit Milwaukee), ranging from fun brewery tours to the Harley-Davidson Museum – and of course, the celebrated bronze statue of The Fonz, Henry Winkler's character in the TV series "Happy Days."
Baskas also authors the "Stuck at the Airport" blog and is a columnist for USATODAY.com.
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CBS News travel editor Peter Greenberg touts Milwaukee's Mitchell Airport (MKE) as "Chicago's secret airport" in a December MSNBC.com article by contributor Michael Ventre. Greenberg goes on to provide expert tips to help travelers avoid holiday travel headaches. Among his helpful hints? Consider secondary airports, such as MKE instead of Chicago's O'Hare.
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Forbes.com contributor Robert Cook ranked Milwaukee's Mitchell Airport among a list of airports around the world that are connecting with travelers using Twitter. The current list of airports using Twitter has grown to 143, representing a 26% increase from the first list published in March 2010. Airports were ranked on the ratio of number of Twitter followers to total airport passengers using the airport, and placed into five lists based on number of passengers served annually. MKE ranked sixth on the list of top ten airports serving 5-10 million passengers annually and is accompanied by other mid-sized national and international airports such as Raleigh-Durham, Pittsburgh, Indianapolis, Abu Dhabi and Glasgow. You can connect with MKE by finding our Twitter handle, @MitchellAirport.
Travel Weekly writer Michael Fabey explains how airlines and passengers are reaping the rewards of using Milwaukee's Mitchell as an alternative airport to Chicago hubs. With the November 2009 addition of Southwest Airlines to MKE's carrier roster, airlines are playing a major role in increasing awareness of MKE among northern Illinois and parts of Chicago that will drive more business into the Milwaukee market. With capacity still available at the airport, experts agree that the region is "ripe for growth."
USATODAY journalist Harriet Baskas examined past and current airport marketing campaigns. Among them, Mitchell Airport's 2005 marketing campaign, "Avoid the Chicago ORDeal." From airsick bags to skywriting, MKE has pulled out all the stops over the years to show Illinois travelers how choosing MKE over O'Hare (ORD) helps them "feel better," she reports. Today, Mitchell Airport concentrates its efforts on the many positives of its airport (versus the negatives of its neighbor) after focus groups revealed northern Illinoisans wanted to hear what is right about MKE.
In light of new data from the Department of Transportation that revealed a decline in passenger traffic in all but four of the nation's 50 largest airports, PeterGreenberg.com staffer Matthew Calcara reviewed the four airports that experienced growth in 2009. Calcara said Milwaukee's Mitchell Airport is "among the nation's most prominent alternate airports and benefits from increased competition among low-cost carriers."
On the front page of USATODAY's Money section, travel writer Ben Mutzabaugh reported extensively on Mitchell Airport's growth, calling MKE "a flashpoint for discount competition." He takes a look at why MKE's carriers, including those competing with Southwest Airlines, believe that Southwest Airlines' expansion at MKE assisted in "raising the profile of Milwaukee as an alternative airport for greater Chicago."
Travel writer Brett Snyder, better known as the Cranky Flier, spent part of the holidays flying, and blogging, his way across the country during the busiest travel time of the year. Lucky for us, fate and a red-eye flight brought him to General Mitchell International Airport where he had time to explore before he gave glowing reviews of Midwest Airline's Best Care Club and the airport's Renaissance Bookstore, and even complimented MKE's short security lines!
USATODAY.com/Today in the Sky
On the heels of AirTran's decision to name Milwaukee's General Mitchell International Airport an official AirTran hub, USAToday travel writer Ben Mutzabaugh discusses the ongoing "airfare battle" among low-cost carriers who call MKE home, including AirTran, Midwest and Southwest Airlines. He reports, "However competitive Milwaukee may have become, AirTran sees potential."
Travel writer Bill McGee addresses the fear of flying, a serious phobia that keeps many Americans grounded. He offers up a list of seminars sponsored by domestic and international airports where flyers can learn to overcome their fears. Making the list is MKE's Flying in the Comfort Zone program, a four-week seminar that concludes with a round-trip flight between Milwaukee and Chicago.
USATODAY.com / Today In the Sky
Travel columnist Ben Mutzabaugh discusses falling fares from MKE. On the heels of MKE's introduction of low-cost carrier, Southwest Airlines, Mutzabaugh also credits another leading low-cost carrier, AirTran, and local hometown airline, Midwest Airlines, for driving down fares. According to a recent Travelocity survey printed this week in a related article by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, average airfares from MKE will be 30 percent below the national average between November and March.
Nationally recognized travel writer Chris Elliott recently ranked Milwaukee's Mitchell International Airport (MKE) as the least expensive travel destination for fall 2009 travel in a September 10 blog posting on www.Elliott.org. Elliott, who writes a regular travel column for MSNBC.com and serves as reader advocate for National Geographic Traveler, ranked MKE at the top of the list based on average fall airfares according to Bing.com.
Following AirTran Airways' announcement of a 50 percent expansion in service out of Mitchell International Airport, Airport Business assistant editor, Brad McAllister, shares how Mitchell is "Bucking the Air Service Trend," in the magazine's May issue, featuring Airport Director Barry Bateman on the cover. Crediting the airport's growing popularity to many carriers' heightened interest in reaching Midwest business and leisure travelers, McAllister calls out Mitchell Airport as a beacon of success. "Each airline has ramped up service from Milwaukee to some degree, and the effect has brought a healthy level of competition, as well as success, to the airport," wrote McAllister. "While most airports across the U.S. struggle to maintain air service, Milwaukee has turned vibrant." He continues by attributing MKE's growth to "a unique position in the marketplace; the potential to gain market share to the south; and, being an airport that has a history of working with air carriers."
Travel + Leisure
Travel + Leisure ranked "America's Best & Worst Airports" in its December 2008 issue. Months later, so many travelers were still sharing their personal best (and worst!) airport choices that Travel + Leisure re-published the article online with 68 pages of rants and raves. Read what people are saying about Milwaukee's Mitchell Airport:
- "Best: MKE Milwaukee"
- "Best Airports: Charlotte, Milwaukee. Milwaukee, I've always been in and out... no problems whatsoever."
- "If I had to fly into Atlanta or Chicago, I'd fly into Charlotte and drive the 3 hours. And fly into Milwaukee and take the 90 min drive."
- "Detroit, Milwaukee, and Houston get my vote to also be in top 10 U.S. airports."
- "Milwaukee is very good. Airports I will go out of my way to avoid are Atlanta and Chicago."
- "When an airport becomes so big it is a "city within a city," you know you are in for a bad time! By contrast the BEST airport in the area is only 90 miles north just south of Milwaukee. General Mitchell Airport of Milwaukee is a joy to go to, parking is convenient and REASONABLE, you are handled promptly and courteously, the staff are knowledgeable and treat you like a paying customer, and the flights are ON TIME! Thank God Milwaukee is 90mins North. Friendly and easy to get around. Chicago is a headache."
The Barbershop: Dennis Byrne
Chicago-based freelance travel writer Dennis Byrne blogs about Mitchell Airport's record increase in 2008 compared with 2007 and calls MKE a "viable alternative" to O'Hare Airport thanks to lower fares and fewer delays.
Following a chaotic start to the winter travel season, the Chicago Tribune shared tips for alleviating stress when your plane has been grounded. Travel writer, Ed Perkins, advises travelers to utilize alternative airports that serve the same metropolitan areas – for example, asking to switch to a flight to or from Milwaukee's Mitchell Airport if O'Hare isn't operating.
Reader's Digest examined alternative airports in Part Two of the guide, "How to get a good deal on anything." RD writer, Andrea Cooper, and Emmy award-winning travel writer, Peter Greenberg, suggest flying through Milwaukee's Mitchell Airport rather than Chicago's O'Hare to avoid large crowds and higher ticket prices.
Airport Improvement Magazine
Caring for the environment was the topic of the day as Airport Improvement took a look at Mitchell Airport's move away from diesel powered shuttles to more environmentally friendly compressed natural gas powered ones. The program, started in 2003, is already saving more than 3.84 tons of greenhouse gases from entering the air each year. The article also discussed Mitchell's other green efforts including the use of ground power units at gates to decrease the use of jet fuel.
Nationally recognized travel expert Peter Greenberg reported on some of the best rail systems in the country. What was at the top of his "best" list? The Hiawatha line, which swiftly carries travelers between Mitchell Airport's doorstep and downtown Chicago. It had the highest reported on-time rate of 87.1 percent, as of July 2008. "The Hiawatha line is an important one for travelers in the Chicago area looking to avoid the woefully crowded O'Hare or the slightly-less-woeful Midway Airport," said Greenberg, "effectively making Milwaukee a third airport for the Chicago area."
August 3, 2008
The Chicago Tribune featured "The other airports" to help travelers avoid "long lines, gruff attitudes and a terminally stale smell" at Chicago's biggest airport. None of that, they say, will be found at Mitchell Airport. Comparing Mitchell to Midway in size and feel, the Tribune called Mitchell a "manageable experience" with one main terminal and three concourses; and clean, carpeted and comfortable. The article touts "loads of deals to be had out of Milwaukee," which can be found using the airfare comparison tool at www.flyMKE.com.
Chicago Parent magazine plugged MKE as a family-friendly alternative Chicago airport, pointing out its convenient location, lower fares, cheaper parking and amenities for kids. The story directs travelers to visit www.flyMKE.com to compare airfares and parking fees.
USATODAY.com / Boardingarea.com
July 8, 2008
Travel etiquette writer Harriet Baskas arms travelers with resources to keep fearful flyers from feeling grounded, including Mitchell Airport's "Overcoming Fear of Flying" class held twice each year at the airport and led by aviation psychologist and certified flight instructor Dr. Michael P. Tomaro.
Lake County News-Sun
July 3, 2008
The Lake County News-Sun reported on the launch of Mitchell Airport's new website,www.flyMKE.com. The website was especially designed and intended for travelers in Lake and McHenry counties and offers tools for comparing Mitchell to its jam-packed counterpart, O'Hare, in the areas of airfares, parking fees and drive time.
June 25, 2008
Nationally recognized news columnist Neil Steinberg says Milwaukee's Mitchell Airport is "not as far as you might think, and less cost and hassle than O'Hare."
June 23, 2008
On the front page of the Chicago Tribune's travel section , "Writing with a Plane, not a Pen" reported on MKE's latest uniquely delivered marketing message to Chicagoans. The skywriting stunt above Wrigley Field during June's Crosstown Classic delivered the message, "SKYMAILME.COM," which was freehanded by the only female skywriter remaining in the country. A-first-hand flight experience was recounted by travel writer John Hilkevitch, who took a ride in the two-seater, vintage plane.
Sky Control: Aviation and Aerospace News
June 23, 2008
Popular online aviation trade Sky Control called MKE's new viral sitewww.skymailme.com a leading-edge marketing tool.
April 9, 2008
USA TODAY plugged Mitchell Airport in its report on "Airport Freebies," touting both its free 30-minute garage parking for cars and its free unlimited motorcycle parking. At a time when airlines are cutting back on services and tacking on surcharges to compensate for rising fuel prices, it's nice to park at an airport that gives you your space. After all, Milwaukee is the hometown of Harley-Davidson!
March 27, 2008
Northern Illinois newspaper Lake Forester featured local columnist, pilot and travel expert, Chuck Wenk, as he praised Mitchell Airport over O'Hare . Wenk reminds Lake County residents that Mitchell can be reached by a brief 40-minute drive, heavy traffic is often avoided, parking is a steal – compared to O'Hare's nearly $50 per day fee! -- and airline choices are abundant. The food options offered by Mitchell also are to Wenk's liking, as is the service he receives each time he flies from MKE. "The folks from Milwaukee seem to still dress up for the ride," he said. "Try it! You'll love it!"
February 4, 2007
USA TODAY reported that travelers at Milwaukee's Mitchell can now take their children to a new play area on Concourse D, near Gate D34. The play area is part of a $9.5 million expansion of Concourse D that was completed in December for Midwest Airlines. The story noted that Concourses C and E, now undergoing similar expansions, also will feature children's play areas by summer.
The popular BootsnAll Travel website featured the Mitchell Gallery of Flight aviation history museum, calling it "a nice little diversion if you have a long wait for your flight."
November 2, 2006
Frequent Flyer reported on flourishing airport food concessions, including those at Mitchell Airport. The story plugged grab-and-go eats from the new Wolfgang Puck Gourmet Express and Quiznos restaurants in Concourse D.
Conde Nast Traveler
Readers of this top national travel magazine ranked Mitchell Airport as the best airport in the country for ease of connections and baggage handling.
October 12, 2006
Chicago Sun-Times announced that Midwest Airlines, Milwaukee's hometown airline, reported a 10 percent increase in trips flown by Illinois passengers in 2006 compared to the previous year. The airport also reported a 5.8 percent increase in Illinois passengers between May and September, over the same period in 2005. The Sun-Times noted that Midwest had conducted a marketing campaign to persuade consumers in northern Illinois that it may be easier for them to drive to Milwaukee than to O'Hare.
September 27, 2006
USA TODAY reported on Amtrak service to Milwaukee's airport station, noting that the $6.8 million station offers a 300-space parking garage plus free shuttle service to airport terminals.
August 29, 2006
The popular travel website says Mitchell Airport understands "fast and tasty airport food," noting a couple new airport eateries, including Quiznos and Wolfgang Puck Gourmet Express.
July 8, 2006
This Illinois-Wisconsin border newspaper said that area residents eager for punctual flight departures should look no further than Milwaukee's Mitchell Airport, noting MKE's steady on-time departure rate of 83 percent - about 13 percent higher than that of O'Hare.
Crain's Chicago Business
May 22, 2006
Chicago's business magazine tells readers to "Choose the 'third airport'...Milwaukee's airport is already there and growing." The article references Mitchell Airport's growth and highlights the airport as a "key opportunity."
April 4, 2006
Northern Illinois Columnist Chuck Wenk spotlights the ease of traveling from MKE as compared to Chicago's Midway. He says there's no reason for North Shore residents to go to Midway, when they can instead drive to Milwaukee's Mitchell Airport, park their car for a reasonable rate and fly on any of the major airlines.