MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - Delta Airlines is offering a sale on Memphis airfares. You heard right, cheap fares from one of the most expensive places to fly in the country. The sale comers within hours of the Memphis Airport Authority approving a new lease with Delta that critics call a sweetheart deal.
"Word has it that the Airport Authority yet again approved a preferential contract today with Delta Air Lines that allows them to leave Memphis without paying for airport improvements made for them," Tom Jones wrote on "Delta Does Memphis," a Facebook page created to protest Delta's high fares in Memphis.
"It's a continuation of the same kind of decision-making that brought us the fortress hub and the price gouging with airfares. The Airport Authority gives new meaning to the adage: when you're in a hole, you really should stop digging," he added.
"Quite frankly, the bloggers don't really understand what's going on. And in this case they're wrong," said Scott Brockman, Chief Operating Officer for the Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority.
"They are trying to create something that really isn't there. Let's leave it at that."
Brockman says Delta signed the same lease as everyone else, including Federal Express. He says the lease, which goes for 5 years, allows airlines to re-evaluate their needs in terms of space once a year.
As for the fare sale, Brockman says he hopes Memphians take advantage.
"It gives an opportunity for the community to show lower fares is what they will support."
Here is the list of fares for sale. All are one way, and have certain terms and conditions:
Charlotte, NC (CLT) $79
Dallas-Ft. Worth, TX (DFW) $139
Denver, CO (DEN) $159
Ft. Lauderdale, FL (FLL) $109
Jacksonville, FL (JAX) $99
Las Vegas, NV (LAS) $159
Los Angeles, CA (LAX) $159
New Orleans, LA (MSY) $89
New York-La Guardia, NY (LGA) $129
Orlando, FL (MCO) $109
Phoenix, AZ (PHX) $159
Tampa, FL (TPA) $99
"They have been reviewing what they can do for quite a while now and try and figure out what city pairs they think they can generate the demand," said Brockman.
Ashlee Wagoner, who says she is loyal to Delta, couldn't believe the sale, especially to Orlando, where she flies regularly.
"$109 each way - are you kidding me?" Wagoner said. "I just booked a flight yesterday for $411."
"I would like more deals like that if we could get it," she said.
The Delta promotion has various restrictions: purchases must be made through the Delta .com website, 21-day advance purchase requirement, purchase before December 5, travel must take place on or after December 4 and be completed by February 13, blackout dates of December 19-23 & 26-31 as well as January 1-6 & 17-21, a required Saturday stay, and limited numbers of seats.