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 GREENSBORO, N.C., Sept. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Continental Airlines today announced that beginning Oct. 1 it will take a dramatic new approach to serving Piedmont-Triad International Airport. The airline will inaugurate 19 daily nonstop jet flights to five cities and will cut fares by as much as 72 percent with the introduction of totally unrestricted Peanuts Fares as low as $69 each way.
 In addition, Continental will offer its new "Add a Penny, Add a Pal" program which allows a companion to fly for just one cent each way with the purchase of a round-trip Peanuts Fare.
 The move makes Continental the second busiest airline at Piedmont Triad with a total of 22 daily jet departures, and includes the only nonstop service from Greensboro to Florida. The new flights are designed to let area travelers fly directly to key eastern destinations, eliminating the need to make time-consuming connections at hubs like Atlanta and Raleigh/Durham. Total local employment will rise to nearly 100 from the present 25.
 "The Piedmont Triad region has had a number of economic development successes in the last two years," said Don Valentine, senior vice president - marketing & sales. "Continental is confident that the growth of this region will continue, and we're pleased that we will be able to take part in that growth, but also contribute to it through the expanded service we're bringing."
 Continental's Peanuts Fares from Greensboro are available beginning today for travel starting Oct. 1 on four new daily jet nonstops to Baltimore for $69, four new daily jet nonstops to Cleveland for $89, four new daily jet nonstops to Atlanta for $79, and four new daily jet nonstops to Tampa for $99. Peanuts Fares of $99 also will be available on Continental's existing three daily nonstops to its Newark hub. Beginning Nov. 1, Continental will introduce three daily nonstops to Charleston, S.C. for $69.
 After reaching their destination, flights from Greensboro will continue directly or connect to other cities including Buffalo ($119), Detroit ($119), Fort Lauderdale ($129), Jacksonville ($119), Houston ($189) and New Orleans ($159).
 Continental will serve the routes with a combination of 737-300 and MD-80/DC-9 aircraft.
 Peanuts Fares are a boon to business travelers because they are available on every seat, every flight, every day -- even when tickets are purchase at the last minute. They carry no restrictions whatsoever and are totally refundable without charge. Peanuts Fares were named in honor of the precious little sums they represent -- usually a two-digit amount on nonstop flights.
 The "Add a Penny, Add a Pal" feature cuts in half the cost for two people to travel together on the same itinerary -- for business or pleasure. "Add a Penny, Add a Pal" seats can be reserved as little as one day in advance and can be used with a stay as short as one night. They may be purchased at the airport or from a travel agent as late as the day of departure, and are fully refundable without charge. The number of "Add a Penny, Add a Pal" seats may be limited on busy flights.
 "Peanuts Fares will allow Continental to attract large numbers of travelers currently using the interstate highway system, because they offer an extremely attractive financial incentive to go along with the time-saving advantages of flying instead of driving," Valentine said. "These fares are so low that regional demand for air travel will balloon as people see that the cost of flying is finally within reasonable reach. Peanuts Fares present a significant opportunity for local economic development initiatives, and will provide a measurable boost to the area's hospitality/tourism industry by generating an influx of visitors. Family members separated by distance and dollars will be able to get together more often."
 Piedmont Triad will become a magnet for travelers from other regions of North Carolina who will switch airports when they see the tremendous savings from Peanuts Fares. For instance, a couple from Charlotte going on vacation in Tampa currently pays $396 for a pair of discount tickets, but they could save $197.98 just by driving to Piedmont Triad for the "Add a Penny, Add a Pal" fare ($198.02 round trip) on Continental. A business traveler accustomed to paying the regular unrestricted $498 fare for a round trip from Raleigh/Durham to Baltimore would save $360 by switching to a Peanuts Fare ($138 round trip) from GSO.
 Continental is launching the new service and Peanuts Fares with a local advertising campaign utilizing local electronic and print media. The airline plans to work closely with area travel agents to help them use Peanuts fares to build their businesses. North Carolina is one of several states in the East where Continental is today announcing Peanuts Fares and more frequent flights on key short-haul routes.
 At Piedmont-Triad International Airport, a Continental Presidents Club gives members a pleasant place to relax before or after flights.
 Based in Houston, Continental is the nation's fifth largest airline, serving 87 U.S. airports and carrying more than nine percent of all domestic travel. Continental also flies to 52 international destinations including five cities in Europe, all of Mexico and Central America, the northern tier of South America, and numerous points throughout the Mid-Pacific and Pacific Rim. With 42,000 employees and a fleet of 420 aircraft (326 jet and 94 Continental Express turboprops), Continental operates approximately 2,000 daily departures serving more than 100,000 customers on an average day.
 -0- 9/13/93
 /CONTACT: Corporate Communications, Continental Airlines, 713-834-5080/

CO: Continental Airlines, Inc. ST: North Carolina, Texas IN: AIR SU: PDT

MM-SB -- CH011 -- 1440 09/13/93 16:14 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 13, 1993

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