Regional Corridor Update

Regional Corridor Update 

Compiled by Jason Dehart

SPOTLIGHT DayJet Debuts in Tallahassee

Tallahassee business travelers now have a new way of getting to cross-state meetings – and being home in time for dinner on the same day.

DayJet Corporation officially launched its point-to-point, “per seat, on demand” jet service in Tallahassee in October with a ribbon-cutting attended by company officials, Florida Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp, Tallahassee Mayor John Marks and other dignitaries.

“We are excited that Tallahassee is one of the first five cities in the nation to initiate DayJet ‘Per Seat, On Demand’ jet service, which will revolutionize the way we travel regionally,” Marks said.

Point-to-point means no connecting flights. The concept of “per seat” means that instead of paying for the whole aircraft, passengers pay only for the seat they need. “On demand” means customers fly according to their individually negotiated time requirements – the company posts no schedules or flight times.

The Boca Raton-based company has five “DayPorts” in Florida – Boca, Lakeland, Gainesville, Tallahassee and Pensacola. DayJet selected Tallahassee as one of its locations because of its obvious ties to government and its strong and growing economy. That, and the only other way to get to the state captial is either to go through the inconvenience of connecting flights or drive.

“As an attorney serving clients throughout the state, I know firsthand the frustrations of traveling directly to and from Tallahassee,” said Marc W. Dunbar, an attorney at Pennington, More, Wilkinson, Bell & Dunbar. Dunbar, a family man who said being home at night is more important than waiting in lines, was DayJet’s first customer and said the company delivers what it promises.

“DayJet gives business travelers a new travel option that lets them determine how much their time is worth,” he said.

DayJet announced in January that since the Tallahasssee DayPort opened, the company has added Naples, Fla., and Savannah, Ga., to its growing DayPort service network. Now, more than 45 regional destinations are available across Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi and South Carolina for DayJet travelers.

To fly DayJet, customers pay a $250 membership fee. Actual ticket prices are between $1 and $4 a mile and can vary depending on destination and how flexible your schedule is.

Company officials said passengers can lower their cost by setting a wider travel window.

The DayJet airplane itself is a, twin-engine, six-passenger “very light jet” built by Eclipse Aviation. 


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Transforming Spring Break

Operators of several large resort developments are drawing a line in the sand designed to discourage the party-hearty spring breakers at Panama City Beach. Paul Wohlford, vice president of sales and marketing for the Resort Collection of Panama City Beach, is spearheading the effort to move beyond the traditional college crowd, reinventing the beach as a family Spring Break destination. His group, along with Intrawest, Sterling Resorts and Waterstone Resorts, has joined forces as Pro Family Spring Break Coalition, which is aimed at breaking the college Spring Break cycle. “We are tired of being portrayed as the place for college kids to party,” Wohlford said. Wohlford cited statistics from Fort Lauderdale showing that, by marketing to a more upscale demographic, that former go-to beach location for the college set was able to increase its Spring Break numbers tenfold.

Developers Mark and Susan Tanney are in the midst of creating a New Urbanism project on the east end of Panama City Beach. While the concept has a similar look to Rosemary Beach and Seaside in neighboring Walton County, the 184 home sites in Tapestry Park are designed and priced as primary residences, rather than vacation homes. In addition to the neighborhood, the project includes a town center with a planned build-out of 550,000 square feet of shops, restaurants, professional offices and loft apartment units.