Southwest Airlines is expanding its services at Islip’s MacArthur Airport.

In a press conference Thursday, the Dallas-based company announced the launch of a new flight to and from Raleigh-Durham International Airport in North Carolina.

The flight, which will be offered twice a day, was intended to help business travelers who frequent North Carolina, says Raphael Weiner, a Southwest spokesperson.

“You will be able to leave Islip in the morning and be home for dinner, or in the late evening with this one-stop-through flight service,” he said.

The new service, which has a stopover in Baltimore, took its first flight Thursday evening.

“Southwest has served this airport and earned the trust of our passengers for more than 20 years,” said the airport’s commissioner, Shelley LaRose-Arken. “We are delighted to celebrate this upgrade of service.”

Southwest’s announcement comes amid the growth of Frontier Airlines, which has added more direct flights to MacArthur over the last year.

Although it recently canceled its routes to Miami, Fort Meyers, and New Orleans, the Denver-based airline announced direct flights to San Juan and Myrtle Beach in February.

Top photo by Dylan Ashe from San Jose, USA – Into The Blue, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link

Southwest and Islip officials with passengers flying to Raleigh-Durham on Thursday.