Horizon to drop Portland-Long Beach service

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Alaska Air Group subsidiary Horizon Air will exit the Portland, Oregon-Long Beach, California route on 20 April as the regional carrier revamps its summer schedule.

Horizon sister carrier Alaska Airlines inaugurated twice daily service on the city pair in February 2009 after rival JetBlue Airways launched the same route with two daily flights in October 2008.

Alaska reduced capacity on the route in May 2009 by handing one of the flights to Horizon. Capacity was further reduced in September 2009 when Horizon took over Alaska's other Portland-Long Beach flight.

Horizon's upcoming exit from the route will leave JetBlue as the only carrier between Portland and slot-controlled Long Beach, according to schedules from Innovata. JetBlue still operates two daily flights on the route with Embraer E-190s.

In addition to its retreat from the Portland-Long Beach route, Horizon will also discontinue service on two routes on which it is the only operator, according to schedules in Innovata. From 6 June, Horizon will terminate intra-Montana operations between Billings and Helena and also stop Eugene, Oregon-Redmond, Washington service.

At the same time Horizon will bolster frequencies on several existing city pairs, with a focus on destinations in California, Idaho, Montana as well as Reno in Nevada and Portland.

"The new schedule increases service in several markets while refining others to meet shifting summer demand," Horizon says in a statement.