2 airports with 'Orlando' in name reach compromise

By Greg Pallone, Reporter
Last Updated: Thursday, August 17, 2017, 12:55 PM EDT

Two Central Florida airports in an ongoing dispute over the use of the word "Orlando" in their names found a compromise during a meeting Wednesday.

Officials from Orlando International Airport and the Orlando-Melbourne International Airport met at neutral Port Canaveral to talk face-to-face about the issue.

The Greater Orlando Aviation Authority wants the Melbourne airport to drop the use of "Orlando" in its title, because it says it causes confusion for passengers who may not be aware that that airport is located some 70 miles to the east.

OIA sees on average more than 40 million passengers per year, compared with Orlando-Melbourne International Airport, which averages just under 500,000.

The Melbourne airport has used "Orlando" in its title and marketing for the past eight years.

Both sides said the conversation was productive.

"There's no question in my mind that everyone here was after the same thing, and that's really to showcase what a great area Central Florida really is," Melbourne Airport Authority Jack Ryals said.

"I think with the leadership that got engaged today, we will probably be able to work through a resolution," GOAA's Frank Kruppenbacher said.

At this point, OIA officials want Melbourne to drop "Orlando" from all of its names and trademarks and state how far the airport is from Orlando and its attractions. In exchange, OIA said it would ensure Melbourne International is included in the list of Central Florida airports.

Both airport authorities said they will meet again soon and come up with a win-win for all parties.