Frontier Airlines will re-open a pilot base serving both Chicago’s O’Hare and Midway International Airports in May of next year. Frontier previously maintained a pilot base in Chicago until April of last year. The new base is expected to employ up to 110 pilots within its first year of operation. Combined with 190 existing flight attendant positions, the Chicago base will house a total of 300 Frontier crew members.
Including airport and maintenance positions, the airline is expected to generate more than $34 million annually in local wages with further growth anticipated in the coming years. Frontier currently offers 13 nonstop routes from Midway International Airport and five nonstop routes from O’Hare International Airport.
“As we continue to grow in Chicago, it makes sense to establish a crew base to help support our expanding operations,” says Barry Biffle, CEO of Frontier Airlines, in a prepared statement. “Establishing a crew base is also a win for customers as it helps support smooth operations and provides a foundation to offer more ultra-low fares to more places.”
“We welcome Frontier Airlines’ decision to re-establish its pilot base here in Chicago, which further bolsters our city’s position as a pivotal hub for the global aviation system,” says Commissioner Jamie L. Rhee of the Chicago Department of Aviation, which owns and operates O’Hare and Midway International Airports. “Importantly, this strategic move will allow the carrier to maintain their diverse and growing service at both O’Hare and Midway, keeping airfares competitive and enhancing options for Chicago consumers.”