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FlyHIA Blog

HIA Skybridge goes Pink!

Subscribe to RSS 0 Comments Oct 23 : 12:00AM

HIA Skybridge goes Pink!
Capital BlueCross and Harrisburg International Airport Partner for Breast Cancer Awareness

Harrisburg International Airport (HIA) is pleased to partner with Capital BlueCross in turning HIA’s SkyBridge Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness.  For the remainder of October, visit the bridge connecting the parking garage to the terminal and learn about six Central Pennsylvania women and their fight against breast cancer. 

“With people from around the world using the facility daily, we feel this is a great opportunity to showcase the impact the battle against breast cancer has had on the lives of some of our neighbors,” said Timothy J. Edwards, Executive Director Harrisburg International Airport.  “It is also a reminder of how breast cancer affects all ages, races and demographics within our community,”

“We are humbled and honored to share the stories of these inspiring women,” said Dr. Jennifer Chambers, Senior Vice President, Chief Medical Officer at Capital BlueCross. “They are strong and active and so full of life. And they are dedicated to making sure that others who are facing breast cancer know that support is available. We are grateful to HIA for helping us spread their message to thousands of travelers each day.”

In addition to breast cancer survivor stories, the Capital Blue blog ( features fresh and original stories each week on nutrition, fitness, wellness, area events and healthy recipes. The blog is written by local contributors and Capital BlueCross employees.

The story of these six women and their strength is inspiring.  Please join Harrisburg International Airport and Capital Blue Cross in bringing awareness to this disease which affects approximately 1 out of every 8 women.  

Tags: community, customer information, Harrisburg International airport, health, local, terminal

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Family Fun in Philadelphia

Subscribe to RSS 0 Comments Sep 26 : 12:00AM

If you are visiting the City of Brotherly Love, a great way for your family to see Philadelphia is to purchase the City Pass.  This discounted ticket offers you admission to your choice of five museums in the Philadelphia area, including the Big Bus Company Trolley Tour.  The Trolley Tour is a great tour to take when you arrive in the area to familiarize yourself with the sights and sounds of Philly.  The bus has numerous pick up locations, including all the main attractions.  Also included in your CityPass is admission to the Franklin Institute and Adventure Aquarium.  In addition, you can choose between Philadelphia Zoo or National Constitution Center and Eastern State Penitentiary or Please Touch Museum.  These are nice options depending on the age of your group.  The National Constitution Center is a great spot for children learning about American History.  The Freedom Rising theatrical production is awe inspiring and inspirational.  The kids will also enjoy Signers’ Hall, where you will find 42 life-size bronze statues of the founding fathers and kids can sign their own copy of the Constitution. 

If you are sticking with a historical theme on this trip, don’t forget to stop at Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell.  While you will have to stop at the Visitors Center to get a walk-up ticket, these attractions are free and part of the National Park system.  The ticket will set a time for you to enter the hall.  Plan ahead and get your tickets early so you have time to see some of the other sights surrounding Independence Hall.   

Philadelphia is rich in history mixed with fun museums for all ages.  The CityPass tour gives you an opportunity to experience both, and hopefully inspire our next generation.  

Tags: family travel, family vacation, siteseeing, travel tips

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Money Saving Tips for Your Disney Vacation!

Subscribe to RSS 0 Comments Sep 19 : 12:00AM

If you are planning on taking your little prince/princess to Disney World, here are a few quick money- saving tips.  A trip to Disney World wouldn’t be complete without a visit to The Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique.  Disney offers several BBB packages, but in order to save some money, visit your local Disney Outlet after Halloween and stock up on the Princess gear.  Sometimes you can score the Princess costumes and accessories at more than 50% off.  Then pack a separate bag with your findings, and have your little princess awake to find her magical dress ready for her day at the park.  Put a note from the Princess that says she looks forward to meeting her later that day.  Your child will be delighted and so will your wallet!  By doing this you can purchase the smaller princess package at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique and not incur the costs for the dress and accessories.  If you don’t live near a Disney Outlet Center, watch the website, they often will have good sales after holidays, including Authentic Park merchandise. 

For your Pirate adventurer, you can find good deals at the outlets or during the Black Friday sales.  If you know you are traveling in the near future it doesn’t hurt to stock up on a few extras to use as a treat during your vacation. Your travel options to Orlando are growing!  Frontier Airlines will increase nonstop service between Harrisburg and Orlando International Airport (MCO) starting December 7th, operating Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Allegiant Air will increase nonstop service to Orlando/Sanford Airport (SFB) towards the end of December 19th, 2014.  Both airlines continue their expanded schedules through February 2015.  So if you’re planning to surprise your loved ones with a trip to Orlando this holiday season, now is the time to book! 

Tags: Allegiant, family travel, family vacation, flying with children, Frontier, kids, MCO, Orlando, Savings, travel tips

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Summer Storms

Subscribe to RSS 0 Comments Jul 15 : 12:00AM

Everyone expects airports to report delays in the winter months, but people often forget that summer weather can wreak havoc on travel plans too!  Did you know that 70% of flight delays are caused by bad weather? And it doesn’t have to be weather happening at your airport, it could be weather happening between points A and B.  Summer weather can actually be worse than winter weather because the storms sneak up quickly, giving airlines less time to prepare. Winter storms tend to take more time to develop, allowing for more preparation. 

Thunderstorms can be very tricky for pilots; the key is for the pilots and the air traffic controllers to work together.  Sometimes planes are re-routed 20 miles or more, just to avoid thunderstorms or bad weather.  The most dangerous part of the storm is their ability to cause microbursts or downdrafts, which are unpredictable.  A downdraft is a vertical movement of air that can resemble tornado like damage.  And don’t forget about hail and turbulence, the two biggest hazards to aircraft during a storm. 

All of these factors play a role in summer weather delays at airports.  If you learn that weather may cause your flight to be delayed or cancelled, get in line at the ticket counter and get on the phone with the airline.  This will maximize your chances of rebooking your flight and hopefully minimize the disruption to your schedule.  You can also check out social media, as some airlines are using platforms like Twitter to rebook flights and give additional customer service information.  

Tags: Harrisburg International airport, MDT, summer travel, thunder storms, weather

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Packing Tips

Subscribe to RSS 0 Comments Jul 3 : 12:00AM

Summer vacation season is upon us and many of you are getting ready to dust of the suitcases and start the packing process.  Our friends at AAA Central Penn have put together a number of packing tips to help ease the daunting task of what and how to pack.  Here are some of the tips put together by their Travel Store staff:

Packing Tips:

1.       Know your airlines baggage policy!  Each airline has its own baggage policy with size and weight limitations.  It’s                
          important to be aware of such policies so you aren’t surprised when you get to the ticket counter. 

2.       Make a packing list.  Start making a list a few weeks in advance, this way you less likely to forget something if you plan

3.       Pick a basic color scheme such as black, white, and red or khaki, black, and white.  Then you can mix and match your
          clothing and layer.

4.       Wear your heaviest and bulkiest clothing such as boots, sneakers, sweaters, or jackets.

5.       Place all other heavy items at the bottom of your suitcase so when you stand up your luggage everything falls to the
          bottom.  These items may include shoes, a toiletry bag, or a hair dryer.

6.       Place a cardboard divider between the heavy items on the bottom and your top layer with clothing.  This serves as a
          divider and easy access to the bottom layer. 

7.       Roll up all knit items such as sleepwear, workout clothes, t-shirts, and sweatpants.

8.       Keep all valuables in your carry-on.  These items may include your wallet, phone, keys, camera, jewelry, and medication.

9.       Always follow the 3-1-1 rule for carry-ons set forth by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA).  Only liquids less
          than 3.4 ounces, in a 1-quart zip lock bag per person are allowed in carry-on luggage/bags.  If you are traveling for an
          extended amount of time, it’s best to place those liquids in your checked luggage. 

10.   Pack patience!  When traveling there are things that often “pop-up” unexpectedly, always best to pack patience and a
         sense of humor!

AAA Central Penn also has a great packing checklist which is a great place to start!  

Tags: air travel, luggage, summer travel, travel tips

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Capital City Airport to Host the Oldest Historic Air Race

Subscribe to RSS 0 Comments Jun 11 : 12:00AM

Air Race Classic Route MapNew Cumberland, PA — Capital City Airport in New Cumberland, Pennsylvania will be the terminus, or final stop, of this year’s Air Race Classic (ARC) which spans over 2,338 nautical miles.

The 2014 Air Race Classic will be held June 16–19. Racers will zoom through ten intermediate stops in four days enroute from Buchanan Field Airport in Concord, California in the quest for the fastest time.

This year’s ARC will have fifty-two teams and over one hundred female pilots compete for the championship title in the transcontinental air race. Follow the ARC teams at or

The race is an annual, all-female pilot air race in which pilot’s race against their own best speed in the small airplane of their choice. Racers will undergo briefings, flight planning, and a fly by study prior to take off.  Additionally, the aircraft must be “stock” models (no experimental) and have their handicap speed identified with a check pilot.  Many of the pilots race not only for the experience, but compete to refine their flight skills as the route changes each year in order to keep the race challenging.

The Air Race Classic carries on the long tradition of women’s air racing that dates back to 1929. Air racing became popular in the 1920’s, but women pilots were forbidden to race against the men in that era, so the women started their own.

The race attracts competitors of all ages around the world.  In 2013, pilots from Kosovo, Japan and Italy joined US pilots in the ultimate four day air race challenge. Collegiate teams make up nearly 20% of each year’s racers.

The race begins Monday, June 16, precisely at 8 A.M. and airplanes will take off every 30 seconds. There are 9 predetermined stops as the pilots make their way along the way eastward, where high speed low timing passes are permitted.

Once at the terminus, Capital City Airport, scores will be determined by a panel of judges and timers, and the winner will be announced at the gala Awards Banquet Saturday evening, June 21.


The Air Race Classic, Inc. is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to: encouraging and educating current and future women pilots, increasing public awareness of general aviation, demonstrating women's roles in aviation, and presenting and promoting the tradition of pioneering women in aviation.

Tags: aircraft, avgeek, Capital City Airport, community, female travel, training

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Frontier's Nonstop Denver Service Returns

Subscribe to RSS 0 Comments Apr 21 : 12:00AM

On April 30th, 2014 Frontier Airlines will resume nonstop service from Harrisburg to Denver four times per week.  Denver has quickly become the 4th most popular destination at MDT.  Visit Denver, The Convention and Visitors Bureau published a great list of attractions for families to help in planning a Denver visit.  Here is the their list and for more information visit

Top 10: Family Attractions in Denver

The Best of the Mile High City for the Young - and the Young at Heart Families will find no shortage of fun for all ages in Denver, with zoos, theme parks, interactive museums, dinosaurs and much more.


Denver Zoo, located in City Park, spans over 75 acres and is home to over 4,000 animals including rare amur leopards, okapi, black rhinoceros, elephants, vampire bats, orangutan, Komodo dragons and more. Children and families love the Zoo, thanks to special children's workshops, summer camps, Family Book Club, and the Bunk with the Beasts overnight adventure.


Exciting minds of all ages, the Denver Museum of Nature and Science lets kids explore fossils and dinosaurs, the mysteries of space at Gates Planetarium (it's out of this world!), Egyptian mummies, the riddles of the human body at Expedition Health, and a slew of other hands-on exhibits.


Educational, creative and fully interactive, this engaging museum for the younger set is chock-block with myriad exhibits, playscapes, and hands-on activities. Kids can shop in a makeshift grocery store and even play the part of the cashier, or brush up on their science quotient in the brand new Bubble laboratory.


Roller coaster groupies, Ferris wheel fans and aficionados of rides that spin, twist and twirl will find all that and more at this urbanized theme park, a catchall of thrills, spills and chills spanning 70 acres. With more than 45 rides, plus a 10-acre Water Park, musical stages, stunt shows, arcades and the StarToon Studios, a kiddie area with pint-sized fun, there's something here for just about everyone.


America's largest family water park features over 40 aquatic attractions on 67 beautifully landscaped acres, including two giant wave pools, white-water rapids, speed slides, the Big Top Family Fun Zone, Wally World for tots and much more.


Oceanic inspiration comes in all guises at this visually intoxicating aquarium, but the main draw is the 500 species of fish and marine life swimming in more than one million gallons of water. The exhibits, which traverse through a coral lagoon, Indonesian rainforests, North American wilderness, Sumatran tiger habitats, shipwrecks and wharfs, are engaging and exotic. Kids can feed the stingrays, swim with the sharks, pan for gold, become a marine biologist for a day, or even spend the night in the


Located in Westminster, a 15-minute drive from downtown Denver, this stand-alone insect zoo is the perfect indoor refuge in which to interact with live invertebrates fluttering around a lush rainforest, or to hold Rosie, a Chilean Rose Hair tarantula, in the palm of your hand. The Wings Over the Tropics conservatory is home to more than 1,200 flitting butterflies, moths and skippers, shipped from farms as far away as Kenya and Ecuador.


Art and science unite in the gardens' spectacular 23-acre site, offering an unforgettable experience for the whole family, as well as a living laboratory for education and plant conservation programs. The new Mordecai Children's Garden offers a place to play, explore and discover. Young naturalists will have the opportunity to learn unique characteristics of plants living in the Rooftop Alpine Garden, discover how plants and animals live together on Marmot Mountain, race pinecones down Springmelt Stream, and hunt for bugs in the Glorious Grasslands and observe aquatic life at Pipsqueak Pond.


Learn about prehistoric Colorado residents at Dinosaur Ridge in Morrison, where visitors can touch the bones of Allosaurus and Stegosaurus at the site where important dinosaur discoveries were made in the late 1800s. See how Iguanadons walked by viewing real dinosaur footprints forever preserved in the sandstone.


Lose track of time year-round at our Depot Museum and 15-acre railyard featuring over 100 engines, cabooses and coaches, and our garden railway, renowned library and roundhouse restoration facility with working turntable. Special events and train rides behind a vintage steam locomotive throughout the year.

Information provided by Visit Denver, The Convention and Visitors Bureau

Tags: Denver, family vacation, Harrisburg International airport, kids, MDT, planning, siteseeing

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Departure: Winter!

Subscribe to RSS 0 Comments Mar 20 : 12:00AM

Here at the airport we are very happy to say goodbye to Old Man Winter and welcome all spring has to offer.  This winter has been like no other.  But we are proud to say that our crew of winter weather warriors kept our airport fully operational all winter long.  Here is winter by the numbers:

·         31,750 gallons of liquid deicer used on the airfield

·         19,147 gallons of diesel fuel used in snow equipment

·         12,000 pounds of solid deicer used on the airfield

·         5,218 hours of time put on snow equipment

·         4,902 hours of overtime worked during snow removal

·         388 tons of road salt and anti-skid used on land side

·         43.2 inches of snow received at MDT as of 2/28/14

·         19 tons of sand used on airfield

·         12 cutting edges replaced on plows

·         An average of 1.9 inches of snow fell per hour

·         Heaviest snowfall day:  February 13

Needless to say we will not be complaining when the heat and humidity are upon us, all we have to do is check this list!

Tags: airport, bad weather, employees, equipment, Harrisburg International airport, MDT, winter

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Old Terminal Update

Subscribe to RSS 0 Comments Mar 12 : 12:00AM

If you’ve been to the airport recently you would certainly have noticed that things are starting to look a little different.  The old terminal, a constant reminder of the past, is quickly disappearing to make way for the future.   

We’ve gotten many questions over the past few months as to “what will become of the space” or “why couldn’t you re-purpose the space.”  All of which are valid questions. 

Following the events of 9/11, the cost to renovated and expand what is now the old terminal building where not cost effective.  Since that time, the airport authority has worked with a number of real estate and economic development agencies to find a new use for the space.  However, its location adjacent to an active airfield, airline mergers and bankruptcies, increasing energy costs and the worldwide economic recession all contributed to making the re-use of the facility difficult.  So over the past two years the Susquehanna Area Regional Airport Authority (SARAA) has worked with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to come up with a demolition and potential site plan for development.  Here are answers to some of the questions we’ve received: 

What will it become?

The airport will construct a snow equipment storage building on a portion of the property; however, the bulk of the property becomes available for aviation related development.  Aviation related development could include items like a hangar, a repair and maintenance operation, fixed based operator, etc.  To assist with these efforts, in December 2013, the old terminal building location was deemed a Keystone Opportunity Zone (KOZ).  This means a business that chooses to build or re-locate to this space will have various levels of tax abatement through 2024.  The KOZ application was sponsored by the Dauphin County Industrial Development Authority and the Capital Region Economic Development Corporation in cooperation with the Middletown Area School District, the Steelton-Highspire School District, Lower Swatara Township and the Boroughs of Middletown and Highspire. 

What is happening with the demolition materials?

Since late December, the contractor has removed and disposed of universal wastes such as fluorescent light bulbs, mercury switches, oils from elevators, fuel lines from an emergency generator, and closed a deep aquifer well.  Two-200 ton chillers and five gas fired boilers from a mechanical room have also been removed.  All materials and equipment have been disposed in compliance with current environmental rules and regulations.  Materials being recycled include the copper telecommunications cables and over 360 tons of steel from throughout the building.  The contractor will also recycle crushed concrete from the terminal and reuse it to backfill the excavation site. 

What can we expect to see when the building is removed?

Once the building is removed and the site is backfilled, the contractor leave behind a level area of approximately 5 acres covered with asphalt.  The surrounding areas will be landscaped and adorned with planters and benches for plane spotting until further development begins.  All of this should be completed by fall 2014. 

How much will the project cost?

The total cost of the project is $1.8 million.  The project is funded by grants from the Federal Aviation Administration, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Bureau of Aviation, the PA Department of Community and Economic Development and SARAA.  

Make sure you follow our progress on our Facebook page and sign up for our monthly e-newsletter.  Better yet, mark your calendar for Saturday, August 23rd for our 2014 HIA Open House.   You and your family will be able to see the site for yourself while getting hands on experience with a wide variety of aircraft and airport equipment.  

Tags: airport, equipment, FAA, Harrisburg International airport, SARAA, terminal

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HIA Tips for First Time Fliers

Subscribe to RSS 0 Comments Feb 12 : 12:00AM

So you’re ready for your first flight at HIA!  Here are some helpful tips to get you to the plane and in the air with ease. 

Before coming to the airport—check in with the airline within 24 hours of our departure time to confirm that your flight time and flight number are accurate. 

                Airline numbers:

  • Air Canada                  800.247.2262
  • Allegiant                      702.505.8888
  • American                     800.433.7300
  • Delta                             800.221.1212
  • Frontier                        800.432.1359
  • United                          800.241.6522
  • US Airways                 800.428.4322

Be sure to have your airline confirmation and a form of ID, such as a driver’s license for domestic flights or a passport for international travel. 

Directions—The address for Bing, MapQuest or Google Maps is:  One Terminal Drive, Middletown, PA 17057.  The address when using GPS is 510 Airport Drive, Middletown, PA 17057.

Parking—Most travelers will be using the exit from 283 East or West to get to the Airport Connector Road.  When you reach the Welcome to Harrisburg International Airport sign, the road will split off into two different directions.

                Stay in the left lane if you are:

  •  Returning a Rental Car
  •  Parking in Short-term Garage Parking
  •  Or if you are being dropped off curbside

Stay in the right lane if you are:

  • Using Long-term/Economy Parking

The cost of short-term or Garage parking is $2.20 per hour or $20.00 for daily use up to 24 hours.  The long-term or Economy parking is $8.50 a day up to 24 hours.  When using the Economy parking lot, the shuttle bus runs 24 hours a day, approximately every 10-15 minutes.  The bus stops at each of the eight designated shelters throughout the parking lot.  The bus will drop you off and pick you up curbside just in front of the terminal.  The shuttle drivers can help you with your luggage as you get on and off the bus if you ask for assistance. 

When utilizing the parking garage, proceed to the 2nd level and walk across the sky bridge into the terminal.  If you have returned a rental car, proceed across the street to the terminal. 

Checking-In—We recommend checking in for a flight 75-90 minutes prior to your departure time.  Each of the airlines has their own check-in counters.  A scale is available for your use opposite these counters to check luggage weight before you get in line. 

When you get to the airline ticket counter, you will need to have your confirmation; identification and luggage (if applicable) ready to be placed on the scale and tagged for your destination.  The airline representative will give you your boarding pass and assign you a seat, if needed. 

If you do not have a bag that needs checked; Delta, US Airways, United and American have self-check-in kiosks for you to use to print out your boarding pass. 

Security Checkpoint—After you have checked in, you will proceed to the security checkpoint located on the second floor of the airport.  Have your boarding pass and ID out for the agent to scan.  You can put your ID away after it has been scanned.  You will not be required to show it to anyone else, but you will need your boarding pass handy to access your seat. 

Any liquids, gels, aerosols you have with you in your carry-on must be 3.4 ounces or less or will be disposed of at security.  Failure to comply with this TSA rule will slow down the checkpoint process.  For a full list of what is acceptable for carry-on luggage, please access the TSA site at

Next, you will place your belongings into a bin to go through the screening equipment.  Place your coat, shoes, belt, lap top (removed from case), electronics, purse, change, etc. into a bin and place on the conveyor belt.  Your belongings will meet up with you on the other side.  A TSA agent will then ask you to walk through the body scanner.  You can then pick up your belongings and proceed to your designated gate. 

Gates—After you have successfully navigated the security checkpoint and gather all of your belongings, check your boarding pass to see if you are using Gate A, B or C and proceed to the gate. 

Take a deep breath, exhale, you’ve successfully navigated the airport and are ready to board your first flight from Harrisburg International Airport.  


Tags: airport, checkpoint, customer information, Harrisburg International airport, tips

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