It was business as usual at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport’s Terminal E on Thursday, a few days after the revelation that a nurse infected with ebola arrived on a Frontier Airlines flight into that terminal.
Passengers didn’t appear to be overly concerned about ebola and weren’t altering travel plans.
Arlington resident Cynthia McKnight returned from Chicago on a Spirit Airlines flight on Thursday morning into Terminal E next to the Frontier operations.
"I was never worried," McKnight said. "If I was worried, I wouldn’t have flown."
Frank Walsh arrived on a flight from Puerto Vallerta for a business trip to Dallas and said he was not worried about traveling to the U.S. city where three cases of ebola have been confirmed.
"I think my mom is more concerned than I am," Walsh said. "It’s a real concern but I think it can’t stop you from making a living."
Local travel agencies say that while ebola is a topic of conversation, they are not seeing any cancellations of trips by customers.
"No one is changing their plans at this point," said Steve Cosgrove, owner of Dynamic Travel in Southlake. His agency also books safaris and trips to Africa for customers and he said those customers are usually experienced travelers who understand the risks of traveling to foreign countries.
Travel Leaders/Main St. Travel in Fort Worth has several agents that handle missionary travel and they have not had many questions or comments about ebola, said president Terry Denton.
"We haven’t had any real negative impact on the business yet," Denton said. "But we are very aware that we could, if the outbreak was to get worse."
So far, U.S. airlines say that fears about ebola have not affected bookings for domestic travel.
On a conference call with Wall Street analysts on Thursday, Delta Airlines chief executive Richard Anderson said bookings do not appear to be impacted by ebola. Delta has the most flights to Africa of any U.S. carrier.
"What’s worth noting is you really can’t catch ebola on an airplane," Anderson said.
For business traveler Tom Latina, flying on Frontier from DFW back to his home in Denver was humorous.
"Will I be making a wisecrack to someone sitting next to me? Probably," Latina said, noting that although the virus is a serious issue, it has become a punchline where he works. "We don’t call it Dallas anymore, we call it ebola country."