Travelers could spend as little as $69 to get to Los Angeles from Medford, as a local carrier and airport officials announced plans Wednesday to start twice-weekly, nonstop service.

Travelers could spend as little as $69 to get to Los Angeles from Medford, as a local carrier and airport officials announced plans Wednesday to start twice-weekly, nonstop service.

Allegiant Air's introductory one-way price runs from May 1 to Sept. 30 for the Monday and Friday flights for tickets purchased by March 11. Regular fares purchased after the introductory period will start at $89 for a one-way flight, but could sometimes be cheaper or more expensive.

"This is an incredible event," said Jackson County Commissioner Dave Gilmour as airport officials unveiled the new flights and fares. "We've been waiting for this for a long time."

Gilmour said his family has paid more than $400 recently to fly to Los Angeles.

Commissioner C.W. Smith said the nonstop flights could encourage more business in the valley.

The new flights will depart Medford at 10:50 a.m. on Mondays and Fridays, arriving in Los Angeles at 12:40 p.m. Flights leaving Los Angeles will depart at 8:15 a.m., arriving in Medford at 10:10 a.m.

The introductory offer won't be available from May 22-25 or July 2-6.

Tyri Squyres, spokeswoman for Allegiant, said the company typically flies into smaller airports, but the decision to fly into Los Angeles International Airport came about after analyzing the cost of using other airports in the Los Angeles area.

"At LAX, the cost came in where we need to be," she said. "It was the best solution."

She also said some of the other airports were more congested.

Current nonstop flights out of Medford to Los Angeles on other airlines are on propeller-driven aircraft, but Allegiant will be flying a 150-seat, McDonnell Douglas MD-80 jet.

Allegiant usually has an 89.9 percent occupancy rate on its planes, and Squyres anticipates it will have similar loads running out of Medford. "We will expect nothing less," she said.

The decision to have nonstop flights on Monday and Friday is an attempt to gear the flight times for a more leisure-time crowd, catering to people with a lot of vacation time, said Squyres.

Jackson County Commissioner Jack Walker said the additional flights will give Medford an advantage over similar-sized areas.

"We are five years ahead of other communities," he said.

Reach reporter Damian Mann at 776-4476 or dmann@mailtribune.com.