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      Cherry Capital Airport sees ridership gains in 2012

      Cherry Capital Airport leaders are working hard to create a competitive edge over other airports in the state. Offering competitive prices is the best way to get the edge, administrators said.

      â??In the last 12-18 months we've made a big effort to put in front of the airlines what our community needs. What we've worked on is a term in the industry called fare discipline. What we have asked is that the airlines try to make airports in surrounding communities have airfares that are comparable, not the same, but comparable,â?? said Kevin Klein, Airport Director.

      In October, Cherry Capitalâ??s ridership was up 5% compared to last October.

      Comparing year to year, ridership is up 3% in 2012.

      Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Grand Rapids reported a 5% decrease in ridership in the month of October.

      â??People understand how to shop now. They are starting to see that when they shop online they may find a lower rate in another market, but then you have to add the cost of driving down state, a possible hotel, and parking is more expensive at other airports,â?? said Klein.

      Cherry Capital is also working with the airlines to make sure there are enough inbound seats available during peak summer months.

      Making sure people can get here is a high priority for an area that relies heavily on the tourism industry.