Air Service in Paducah & the EAS Program

When Delta Airlines announced in 2009 that they were ending service to Memphis from Paducah, it potentially signaled the end of commercial air service in Paducah.

The saving grace for Barkley came in the form of a Department of Transportation (DOT) program, called the Essential Air Service Program (EAS).

This program, in place since 1978 was started in an effort to make sure small communities were still able to have commercial airline service.

This isn't your Father's Airline Industry

  In terms of aviation, the 80's and early 90's spoiled us.  There were a dozen major airlines, falling all over themselves and each other, racing to carry as many people as they could, at any cost.

Even if it meant operating at a loss to do it. This was a boon for the flying public as it meant connections everywhere, to hub cities and smaller communities on major airlines. 

During this period, from Paducah you could fly to Nashville, Memphis, St. Louis, Louisville, Evansville, and even Frankfort.