Turkish Airlines has opened a gateway in Houston, launching nonstop flights from the city to Istanbul's Ataturk International Airport.
Turkish now has major gateways in five U.S. cities, including Los Angeles, New York, Washington, and Chicago. Houston services will start with four frequencies a week and will expand to six flights per week on July 3.
"Houston is a key point in the international aviation," Turkish Airlines' Hamdi Topcu said in a statement. "We believe that these new flights will make international travel easier and more convenient for both business and leisure travelers in the area."
Houston Mayor Annise Parker sees the new flights as a boost to trade and investment between the two nations. She is planning a trade mission to Istanbul in late April to build economic relationships and increase air investment.
"This new route positions Texas with a new strategic advantage for international commerce since more than 300 Houston companies have business or trade ties with Turkey," Houston Airport System's director, Mario C. Diaz, said in a statement. - Jon Ross