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“Take Me Out to the Airport” -- DFW International Airport Kicks Off Summer Travel Season With Baseball Theme, Family Fun

Airport debuts Junior Flyer’s Clubs sponsored by Pepsi; Holiday ‘free’ parking returns

DFW INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, Texas (May 25, 2006) - Record-breaking summer travel may mean long lines and frazzled families elsewhere - but not at DFW, where “Take Me Out to the Airport" is the song of the travel season. DFW executives donned baseball jerseys and 'threw out the first pitch' for summer travel today, predicting 16 million travelers will travel through the Airport this summer. The Airport also announced holiday parking discounts that will give parkers two days of free parking at close-in terminal parking if remote lots are full. And DFW debuted its Junior Flyer’s Club, children’s play areas in Terminal B and C that will make travel more enjoyable for the entire family

Fast ball in hand, DFW Chief Operating Officer Kevin Cox threw out the first pitch of the summer travel season at today’s press conference joined by local baseball mascots and fan favorites from the Texas Rangers, Frisco RoughRiders, and Fort Worth Cats.

"There is no doubt this will be a record summer for travel across the country and our goal here at DFW is to make the summer travel experience as fast, easy and convenient as we possibly can,” said Cox. "Our security checkpoint lines are fast. Skylink - the world’s largest airport train - will speed connecting passengers to their terminals. Our new International Terminal D is drawing rave reviews. And our parking is plentiful - with more than 40,000 spaces. All of the amenities and improvements that have been added over the past year benefit our passengers and we expect to see very positive results as summer travel begins.”

DFW's forecast of 16 million summer passengers is a slight 2-percent drop from last year. The Airport is still feeling the effects of American Airlines shifting some of its operations to Dallas Love Field. However, a long list of new air service from other carriers is giving passengers more options and competitive fares as family vacations begin. 

“We have seen a great new influx of flights to DFW in recent weeks, which is always good news for the North Texas economy as well as the 1.7 million passengers traveling through DFW this holiday weekend,” said Joe Lopano, executive vice president of terminal management and marketing at DFW. "So ‘Take Me Out To The Airport’ is a great theme to kick off summer travel at DFW. We have new flights and more carriers to take you beyond DFW to the world.” 

New Service Highlights

• Alaska Airlines adds a 3 rd non-stop flight to Seattle • AirTran Airways adds new service to Chicago-Midway • ATA Airlines adds a 5th non-stop flight to Chicago-Midway • Sun Country has added non-stop flights to two popular Mexican beach markets – Puerto Vallarta and Cozumel • Frontier adds a 7th non-stop flight to Denver • Champion Air and Aero Mexico return with new charter service • Mexicana Airlines returns to DFW with twice daily non-stop service to Mexico City 

New Family Areas

The Junior Flyer’s Clubs sponsored by Pepsi feature more than 1,200 square feet of aviation-themed play areas for kids. DFW CEO Jeff Fegan joined Cox, Lopano, Pepsi officials and the baseball mascots for the official ribbon cutting as eager youngsters rushed to try out the new facilities.

Holiday Advice

Plan ahead. Travel light. Check out the new restaurants and shopping in International Terminal D in their first full summer of operation. "The employees of DFW as well as our Holiday Helpers and Airport Ambassadors are ready to assist passengers to get their destinations as quickly and easily as possible,”said Cox.

DFW Parking

DFW is offering discount terminal parking coupons to drivers when remote lots fill-up. The coupons will allow travelers 2 free days of terminal parking and just $16 per day after that. The Airport expects to distribute 3,000 coupons during the promotion which runs May 24 th to May 26 th . DFW has more than 40,000 parking spaces located on the Airport. www.dfwairport.com/parking

Holiday Helpers

DFW’s Holiday Helpers are out in force with Airport Ambassadors distributing summer travel goodies to passengers as live entertainment plays throughout the terminals. Holiday Helpers - an all volunteer employee group born after the tragic events of September 11, 2001 - also distributed free drink samples, from Pepsi and guided passengers. 

U.S. Military Rest and Recuperation (R&R flight) Today's incoming flight of more than 200 soldiers from Iraq and Afghanistan received its daily hearty welcome from dozens of well-wishers and exchanged high fives with Rangers, RoughRiders and Cats mascots. www.dfwairport.com/heroes

 Airport Dining DFW is home to some of the best restaurants in North Texas, with the newest operations in International Terminal D. Popular choices include Tigín, an authentic Irish pub, Reata Grill and Blue Mesa, which serve innovative southwestern cuisine and Cantina Laredo for Tex-Mex flavor. Cool River and Champps also join the International Terminal D lineup with local flair. DFW’s clubhouse also includes national greats like Bennigan’s, TGI Friday’s, Fuddruckers, Einstein Bros. Bagels, Popeyes, and McDonalds. 

Great coffee is available at Seattle’s Best, Jazzman’s or Starbucks and cool ice cream can be found at Ben & Jerry’s and Haagen Dazs. www.dfwairport.com/shops 

Connectivity DFW is rated the best “un-wired” Airport in the U.S. With T-Mobile Wi-Fi connectivity throughout the terminals, DFW provides a great place to work on business or plan some fun on the trip. Plug in and relax at the Samsung Mobile Travel Centers before catching a flight. With multiple power outlets available, charging phones and running laptops is a breeze – and free. 

Art Located in the Skylink Stations and throughout International Terminal D, DFW showcases a world-class $6 million visual arts program. DFW’s Art Program features paintings, floor medallions, sculptures and interactive pieces as well as the Nasher Sculpture Garden outside of International Terminal D. www.dfwairport.com/cdp/art

Grand Hyatt and Grand Met Schedule permitting or on a layover at DFW, stop by for fine dining at the Grand Met located in the Grand Hyatt in International Terminal D. The Grand Met offers innovative cuisine to satisfy the most discriminating palate. www.granddfw.hyatt.com

Hyatt Regency DFW AAA/CAA members can receive 10 percent off the prevailing rate and free full breakfast daily at Hyatt between May 26 and September 5, 2006. To receive a free breakfast, please be sure to use code – BREAKF - when making your reservation. A AAA membership card must be presented at check-in. Offer valid at participating Hyatt Hotels & Resorts in the U.S., Canada and Caribbean. Book your reservation today. www.dfwairport.hyatt.com

 A New Tune for the Holiday

In the true spirit of a summer get-a-way, DFW took the tune of the old ball park favorite and made it our own: “Take Me Out To The Airport.”

“Take Me Out To The Airport” (To the tune of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game”) Take me out to the Airport, Where there are no long lines… Buy me a round trip and cracker jacks, I don’t care if I ever fly back… ‘Cause it’s root root root for traveling, If we don’t fly it’s a shame… For it’s one, two, three flights…we’re out, DFW Airport’s the name!