Lufthansa German Airlines plans to offer special promotional fares as low as $400 for its new Denver-Munich daily nonstop, an airline official told Denver City Council members Wednesday.
Lufthansa district sales manager Kelsey O'Brien spoke at a council committee meeting after Denver International Airport officials asked members to approve a $1.2 million marketing incentive for Lufthansa to promote the Munich flights, which start March 31.
Introductory fares have not been finalized, but with taxes and fees included, they could be as low as $481 round trip, O'Brien said.
Members of the economic- development committee overwhelmingly approved the incentive.
Only Councilwoman Jeanne Faatz opposed the grant, saying government should not have to offer incentives to private companies to win their business.
The incentive package for Lufthansa includes another $400,000 from DIA in landing-fee waivers, $200,000 from Colorado's economic-development office and another $200,000 from the Metro Denver Economic Development Corp.
DIA official Mary Buckley said the $2 million incentive package for Lufthansa is worth it since the daily flight is expected to generate about $19 million a year in direct economic benefits at the airport and another $43.3 million in indirect visitor spending annually.
Buckley said the incentives are available for any airline that starts flights to key cities targeted by DIA for new international service. In Europe, the targets are Munich; Rome; Paris; Amsterdam, Netherlands; and Manchester, England.
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The new Denver-Munich flight is expected to generate $108 million in annual economic impact, which should provide plenty of incentive to pursue more direct overseas routes in the future.
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