Published: Nov 19, 2010 1:37 AM EST
Updated: Nov 18, 2010 10:39 PM EST

PUNTA GORDA, Fla - Just in time for the holidays carrier Allegiant is now offering flights in and out of Charlotte County Airport.

"We paid less than $50 each way", said one passenger as she waited for her bag. 

The non-stop service includes Kentucky, North Carolina and Michigan. The cheap flights also present an opportunity to get tourist in an otherwise still tight economy to vacation in Southwest Florida.

The county's only airport also stands to make plenty of money. Many passengers we spoke to flew into Punta Gorda with final destinations in Bonita Springs and Naples. 

One passenger drove from Fort Pierce to take advantage of the low fares.

Tourism officials are hoping some of those passengers traveling elsewhere will spend on stores and restaurants in Charlotte County before hitting the road.