Tucson International Airport

Passengers walk past the business center along the new corridor leading to the gates at Tucson International Airport.

Kelly Presnell / Arizona Daily Star

American Airlines is launching a new daily nonstop flight between Tucson International Airport and Charlotte Douglas International Airport in February.

The daily service starting Feb. 16 is an overnight “red-eye” flight from Tucson initially departing at 12:30 a.m. and arriving in Charlotte, North Carolina, at 6:18 a.m., giving Southern Arizona passengers quick connections to destinations along the East Coast and the Southeast U.S. as well as to the Caribbean, TIA noted.

The 7:30 a.m. flight from Charlotte will arrive in Tucson at 10:04 a.m. Both the departure and return times will shift one hour earlier starting March 11.

The new flights will be on board 150-seat Airbus A320 aircraft, with 12 first-class seats, 18 main cabin extra seats and 120 main cabin seats.

Tucson Airport Authority President and CEO Bonnie Allin said Charlotte is an important new route for the region.

“Charlotte gives Southern Arizonans more and new opportunities to reach their destinations. It also makes it easier for people to travel to and from the southeastern U.S.,” Allin said. Because of the early arrival in Charlotte, passengers will be able to catch a connection to many East Cost and Southeast cities before noon.

TIA offers nonstop flights to 18 destinations now and will add a thrice-weekly nonstop to Austin, Texas, on Via Air starting Jan. 18.

With the Charlotte route, American Airlines is eligible for air-service incentives of up to $200,000 each in waivers of landing fees and terminal rent, plus $150,000 in marketing assistance.

Contact senior reporter David Wichner at dwichner@tucson.com or 573-4181. On Twitter: @dwichner. Facebook.com/DailyStarBiz

Senior reporter covering business and technology for the Arizona Daily Star/Tucson.com