Allegiant Air will begin flying to Alaska for the first time, adding flights to Anchorage as part of a broader 16-route expansion announced by the carrier on Tuesday.

Allegiant’s Anchorage flights will begin May 22, when the ultra low-cost carrier launches seasonal nonstop service from Bellingham, Washington. (Scroll down for full list of all the new routes)

“Alaska is huge news for us,” Drew Wells, Allegiant vice president of planning and revenue, says to USA TODAY’s Today in the Sky blog. “We’re excited to launch service into any new city, but I think Alaska has a different level of excitement.”

“Alaska is immensely popular for Northwest folks,” Well said, calling Bellingham “a natural fit in terms of the customer profile” that’s expected to propel summertime demand to Alaska.

Canadian travelers also could be a big draw for the service from Bellingham, which regularly draws a large number of travelers from across the border. The airport sits about 50 miles from downtown Vancouver, and flights to U.S. destinations are frequently cheaper from the U.S. side of the border.

“We’ll certainly draw our fair share of Canadian customers on this, but there’s no shortage of customers coming from Bellingham and northern Washington,” Wells said, adding “we could end up at a 50-50 breakdown” between U.S. and Canadian customers for the Anchorage flight.

Elsewhere, Allegiant’s 15 other new routes continue a trend in which it has diversified its network. Allegiant has long run a business model focused on offering nonstop flights to high-demand leisure destinations in Las Vegas, Florida and California.  But the airline has increasingly been developing bases like New Orleans; Nashville, Tennessee; and Austin, Texas.  

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Allegiant’s latest expansion announced Tuesday included some of those newer bases, including four new routes to Savannah, Georgia, and two to Norfolk, Virginia.

“This is a really kind of a gateway into Virginia Beach and maybe into the northern parts of the Outer Banks,” Wells said about Norfolk. “We like this as a secondary destination.”

Also getting two new routes: Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, where Allegiant will fly nonstop to 22 destinations once the new flights begin.

“The last few years, you’ve definitely seen more of a push for Allegiant to get (from) the Northeast to Myrtle Beach,” Wells said. “We’ve seen a lot of success there, especially later in the season. It’s not so much an April or May destination, but as you push later into August and September, you see a lot of strength from the Northeast going down there.  We’ve been very happy.”

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Perhaps the most interesting new route announced by Allegiant on Tuesday: Nonstop service between Denver and Knoxville, Tennessee. The route will be Allegiant’s second to connect Denver with an airport in the Great Smoky Mountains.

“Last year we launched Denver-Asheville (North Carolina), and we were really pleased the performance,” Wells said. “We wanted to push that one further and try out Knoxville. We think it fits very well with our network profile.”

He said the route should appeal to the “outdoor communities” in both markets. “I think we’ll end up split fairly evenly here with passengers going both directions.”

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Scroll down for details on all 16 of the new routes announced by Allegiant on Tuesday. Introductory fares must be purchased by Wednesday (Jan. 16) for travel by Aug.13.

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Anchorage, Alaska

Bellingham, Washington: Seasonal service begins May 22 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $59.

Charleston, South Carolina

Cleveland: Seasonal service begins June 6 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $59.

Destin/Fort Walton Beach, Florida

Omaha, Nebraska: Seasonal service begins June 7 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $59.

Tulsa, Oklahoma: Seasonal service begins June 6 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $59.

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Albany, New York: Seasonal service begins June 5 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $59.

Hagerstown, Maryland: Seasonal service begins June 6 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $49.

Nashville, Tennessee

Grand Rapids, Michigan: Seasonal service begins June 6 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $49.

Norfolk, Virginia

Cincinnati: Seasonal service begins June 7 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $49.

Cleveland: Seasonal service begins June 7 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $49.

Phoenix/Mesa, Arizona

Grand Junction, Colorado: Year-round service begins April 5 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $49.

Kalispell/Glacier Park, Montana: Seasonal service begins May 15 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $69.

Knoxville, Tennessee

Denver: Seasonal service begins May 22 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $69.

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Allentown, Pennsylvania: Seasonal service begins June 8 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $49.

Grand Rapids, Michigan: Seasonal service begins June 7 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $49.

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Niagara Falls, New York: Seasonal service begins June 7 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $49.

Portsmouth, New Hampshire: Seasonal service begins June 8 with two flights a week; introductory fares from $59.

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