The Rochester Democrat & Chronicle reported a couple of days ago that US Airways is ending its three daily US Express Jetstream 41's from ROC to BWI on Sept. 8. Monroe County is negotiating with AirTran to begin a third daily flight on the route, to replace the lost US capacity. Airport manager Slaybaugh is "optimistic" that AirTran will add the flight. AirTran didn't return the paper's calls for comment, which suggests to me that something is underway.
Here's the link to the story:
It seems to me that AirTran may have a promising future in Rochester. Their starter loads, around 67 percent the first month, were well above average for a new carrier. All the AirTran flights I've flown on ROC-BWI have been 90 percent or more full. I think ROC-BOS could be a promising AirTran route, since it's badly underserved, with only 4 daily US Express ERJ-145's.
In the lower-fare 1980s, the route supported several daily mainline US flights *plus* three or four Empire Airlines Fokker 70's. I don't buy for a minute that all ROC-BOS can support is 200 seats. At reasonable fares, like AirTran would offer, the route could probably easily support 2, maybe 3, daily 717's.
If Southwest enters ROC (which I think likely after US goes under), AirTran would still be all right, I think. They'd probably exit ROC-BWI since WN would probably offer 6-7 flights per day on the route. However, 2 daily ATL + 1 MCO, + 2 daily BOS if they enter that market, would leave FL with 5 dailies at ROC. That's still a respectable market share. A third ATL daily is even possible, since some BWI traffic is transfer, and one flight continues on to ATL.