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Augusta Regional Airport fills reservations for Masters Week tournament days

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Masters Week bookings for private aircraft flying into Augusta Regional Airport have nearly reached full occupancy, leaving other planes to land elsewhere.

Daniel Field is starting to receive calls for reservations now that Augusta Regional's spots for Masters Week are filled.   FILE/STAFF
Daniel Field is starting to receive calls for reservations now that Augusta Regional's spots for Masters Week are filled.

Augusta’s main airport has filled its general aviation reservations beginning April 10 through Masters Sunday, April 14, said Ken Hinkel, the deputy director of airport services for Augusta Regional.

For the first time, Augusta Re­gion­al, Daniel Field, Thomson-McDuffie Regional and Aiken Municipal airports require visitors to reserve parking spots. The plan is meant to better use the airports’ combined parking capacity and alleviate parking shortages at Augusta Regional.

“Our (parking) ramp would become full and some aircraft were being diverted to other airports,” Hinkel said.

That caused the Federal Avia­tion Administration to redirect aircraft to other airports. Many planes ended up at Daniel Field or in Aiken and Thomson even though passengers had arranged for cars and food at Augusta Regional.

Augusta Regional accepted reservations beginning Feb. 1 and filled to capacity for tournament days the first week of March. Limited reservations are available April 7-9, Hinkel said.

The airport has 85 parking spots for aircraft, down from 140 to 150 in previous years, Hinkel said. A taxiway that was used for auxiliary parking will not be used this year.

Thomson-McDuffie Regional Airport does not expect an increase in planes using its runways, said Keith Bounds, the airport’s general manager.

“Last year, we would get the planes except they were an­nounced and unplanned,” Bounds said. “The same planes are going to the same places, now with forethought and planning.”

The airport handles a few hundred planes during Masters Week, he said.

Becky Shealy, the marketing director of Augusta Aviation Inc., the operator of Daniel Field, said the airport is fielding calls from customers with medium-size jets that didn’t book Augusta Regional before it filled up.

“The phone calls for us are just starting to come in,” Shealy said Monday.

Augusta Regional started a waiting list, but Hinkel said it’s ulikely that customers will cancel Masters Week reservations.

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Riverman1 03/26/13 - 05:34 am

Rebel, now is your time to shine. Good luck.

soapy_725 03/26/13 - 09:46 am
Wonderful memories of AGS on Master's Monday

Arrive at AGS about 630a for a 700a flight to ATL connecting to CIN with reservations and seating two weeks in advance. Mass confusion with golf patrons at AGS. One and only flight out at 700a delayed. AGS brings in another plane. Instead of placing those with reservation and connecting flights for 700a on the replacement flight, they put the casual arrivals on the that flight. The 700a connecting to ATL is 30 minutes late. Finally arrive in ATL and have missed connection or CIN. We are SORRY. Here is a meal ticket. Next flight to CIN this afternoon. Finally make CIN at 830p, in hotel by 1100p. We could have driven from AGS to CIN in eight hours via I-20, I-26, I-40 and I-75.

When your arrival plans are important. Never trust AGS. If you are flying on your dime. Ride the shuttle van to ATL. Cost, even if you need an overnight motel for red eye, is less. And the shuttle vans and the motel vans park adjacent to each other in ATL. Shuttles do door to door service. No parking fees.

Sceptic 03/26/13 - 11:55 pm
Augusta Aviation, Inc.,

Augusta Aviation, Inc., operator of Daniel Field? If that isn't a conflict of interest, I don't know what is. That's a classic example of the fox guarding the hen house.

What happened to the airport manager? Buster Boshears retires, and suddenly the airport doesn't need a manager any more? We know who is looking out for Augusta Aviation, Inc. But who is looking out for the airport users and the taxpayers? Somebody in the Augusta government needs to wake up and smell the coffee; you have been hoodwinked by a master conniver.

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