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Michigan Flyer’s new schedules of frequent daily motorcoach trips to and from Detroit Metro Airport (DTW) for passengers from Greater Lansing and Ann Arbor start today. So does its brand new shuttle service between Brighton in Livingston County and DTW. Tickets are now available for purchase online at www.MichiganFlyer.com.

Passengers now enjoy more frequent roundtrips between the East Lansing Marriott and DTW, as well as between Ann Arbor’s Blake Transit Center and DTW, starting earlier in the morning and ending later at night than before. This enables riders to reduce wait times at the airport, and optimize their connections with all 13 airlines at DTW.

Specifically, Sunday through Friday, East Lansing passengers can now choose from 14 runs per day (up from 12, except on Saturday), as can Ann Arbor passengers. Importantly, Michigan Flyer’s first daily run to DTW departs earlier than before—at 2:15 a.m.—and its last run from DTW leaves later (at 11:30 p.m. or 11:45 p.m., depending on the terminal), except for Saturday, when the last DTW departures are at 9:30 p.m. or 9:45 p.m. View the new schedules online here.

The earlier eastbound departures (and later westbound returns from DTW) should be a big boon for budget-minded people who wish to book flights on airlines such as Spirit, Frontier, Jet Blue, or Southwest, which often take off between 5:30 a.m. and 6:30 a.m.

New Brighton Service

The new Brighton stop—also served by 14 Michigan Flyer roundtrips per day—is located at the Meijer store at 8650 W. Grand River Ave., just off highway I-96 near U.S. 23. Passengers are picked up and dropped off at the south side of the Meijer parking lot, near Cross St.

Long-term parking is available there for $2.50 a day for people flying to destinations outside of Michigan, and must be paid for in advance through www.MichiganFlyer.com. In addition, plans are in the works to establish a small ticket office/passenger waiting area in a temporary building at the Meijer site soon.

The Brighton service was developed through a public-private partnership between Livingston County, the Livingston Essential Transportation Service, Michigan Flyer, LLC, and its parent company, Indian Trails, Inc. It’s similar to the partnership through which Michigan Flyer and Indian Trails have operated the AirRide service for the Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority since 2012, giving Washtenaw County residents a convenient, comfortable, and affordable option for getting to and from the Detroit airport.

Funding for the new Brighton service comes mostly from passenger fares and a large investment by Indian Trails in operations and equipment, and partly from Michigan’s Local Bus Operating Assistance Program, whose funds are administered by the Michigan Dept. of Transportation.
The adult fare to ride Michigan Flyer between Brighton and DTW is $22 one way or $40 roundtrip. Per-person fares are even lower for couples or family members traveling together.

Inter-City Commuting

Though Michigan Flyer is designed primarily as an airport shuttle service, about 30,000 people a year use it to commute between East Lansing and Ann Arbor. The new schedules connect both East Lansing and Ann Arbor with Brighton, making it possible for more people to commute between the three cities.

Monday through Friday, for example, commuters have the choice of 11 daily roundtrips between East Lansing and Brighton, eight between East Lansing and Ann Arbor, and six between Ann Arbor and Brighton.

In order to provide the most direct airport service at peak travel times for East Lansing passengers, some of Michigan Flyer’s daily runs now go directly to DTW after stopping in Brighton, bypassing Ann Arbor altogether. This shaves about 20 minutes off the travel time to DTW. While this represents a decrease of four daily roundtrips between East Lansing and Ann Arbor, which may disappoint some commuters, it’s part of a balancing effort to serve the greatest number of customers possible. To view just the East Lansing portion of the new schedules, click here.

The commuting possibilities may be especially attractive to the thousands of Livingston County residents who regularly travel to Ann Arbor or Lansing to work at the University of Michigan, Michigan State University, or the state government in Lansing.

The standard fares for travel between Brighton and either East Lansing or Ann Arbor are $15 one way or $30 roundtrip. It’s worth noting that discounts are available for commuters who make multiple roundtrips each week.

Meanwhile, Michigan Flyer’s convenient pick-up/drop-off locations for all Detroit Metro Airport travelers remain the same—at the McNamara Terminal it’s just outside of Door #1 of the Departures/Ticketing Level. At the North Terminal, it’s at Stall #1 of the Ground Transportation Center.

Michigan Flyer, LLC—a division of Indian Trails—offers frequent, daily motorcoach connections between East Lansing, Brighton, Ann Arbor, and Detroit Metro Airport. Since its launch in 2006, its fleet of late-model, deluxe motorcoaches has carried more than 2 million passengers and achieved an extraordinary 98 percent rate of on-time performance. Each coach exceeds EPA standards with engine technology that reduces exhaust pollutants to near zero while achieving fuel economy of 240 passenger miles per gallon. On the web at www.MichiganFlyer.com.

Indian Trails, Inc.—which has served as Michigan’s premier, family-owned, inter-city motorcoach carrier for 109 years, and is based in Owosso, Mich.—operates one of the largest and newest fleets of deluxe motorcoaches in Michigan. In addition to its daily scheduled routes throughout Michigan and into Chicago, Duluth and Milwaukee, its services include charters, tours, shuttles, casino runs, and airport transfers. On the web at www.IndianTrails.com.