Miami airport hopes to expand

MIAMI -- Miami International Airport officials plan to hire a consulting concern to undertake feasibility studies in an effort to help the airport expand its operations whereby more international routes would be served.

The airport's international services are strong to and from the Caribbean and Latin America, but somewhat limited to and from Europe, Metro-Dade Aviation Department officials note, while nonstop and direct flights are lacking to and from Asia, the Middle East, and Africa.

Separately, MIA also wants to attract more low-fare domestic carriers. AirTran is one of the few low-fare carriers serving MIA.

While carriers such as Southwest, Spirit and JetBlue serve the nearby Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, higher operating costs and a lack of counter space at MIA have made it less attractive to the low-fare carriers, Metro-Dade Aviation officials concede.

Counter space, however, is being expanded at MIA, they said.

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