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Fort Worth, Dallas mayors head to Europe to promote DFW Airport

(L to R) DFW Airport CEO Sean Donohue, American Airlines CEO Doug Parker, Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings and Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price at a ceremony marking American’s inaugural flight to Beijing from DFW Airport in May.
(L to R) DFW Airport CEO Sean Donohue, American Airlines CEO Doug Parker, Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings and Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price at a ceremony marking American’s inaugural flight to Beijing from DFW Airport in May. Courtesy of American Airlines

Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price and Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings are going to be traveling buddies for the next week.

The two leaders are heading an airport delegation to the United Kingdom and Germany through June 13, meeting with airlines and European companies to promote North Texas and Dallas/Fort Worth Airport. Rawlings is already in Germany and Price will meet up with him on Sunday.

“It’s going to be a great trip,” Price said at the monthly DFW Airport board meeting on Thursday morning. “It’s an excellent opportunity since the U.K. accounts for the largest exporter/importer for this region.”

The mayors have gone on previous trips for the airport to China, Australia and South America to encourage more business and air service for DFW and North Texas.

Although Europe is one of the oldest destinations out of DFW — American celebrates 30 years on its DFW-Frankfurt route this year — Price said it is important to re-establish relationships with European partners. She said she was looking forward to meeting with the mayors of London and Frankfurt on this trip.

“There is potential for growth but you have to promote this area again and say look what’s happened since you’ve started flying here,” Price said.

Currently, American Airlines and British Airways operate nonstop flights to London from DFW. Lufthansa and American operate nonstop flights to Frankfurt from DFW.

Passenger traffic to Europe from DFW has dropped in the past year as passengers who used to connect through Europe to Africa and India have started flying Persian Gulf carriers to those destinations.

“When you look at our international footprint at DFW, we only serve 5 European cities,” said DFW Airport chief executive Sean Donohue. “We probably lost a little focus on Europe in the last couple of years and we want to elevate that back up.”

Andrea Ahles, 817-390-7631

Twitter: @Sky_Talk

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