Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Name

MS in Engineering Management (M.S.E.M.)

Degree Granting Department

Industrial and Management Systems Engineering

Major Professor

Yu Zhang, Ph.D.

Co-Major Professor

Grisselle Centeno, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Patricia Anzalone, Ph.D.


Decision Making, Intrastate Air Service, Forecasting


Florida is a state in the southeastern region of the United States. Its infrastructure allows for several travel modes including: rail, automobile, bus, aircraft, and ship. However, most intrastate travelers in Florida are limited to two practical choices: travel by car (ground mode) or travel by air (air primary mode). Due to the dramatic growth of Florida’s population over recent years, traffic has become a critical factor that impacts Florida’s development. This thesis focuses on intrastate air primary mode and develops decision making models that could aid government and airline companies to better understand travelers need and as such plan to provide economical and feasible alternatives for passengers. In addition, this work presents a model to assist individual travelers to evaluate various mode alternatives and better plan for upcoming trips.

In the first part of this thesis, two decision models are discussed: Time-Based and Cost-Based models. For each model, two scenarios are considered. Break-even air flight lengths for the commercial airport pairs in Florida are calculated. The results suggest that some airport pairs should open intrastate nonstop flights based on time and cost factors.

In the second part of this thesis, a forecasting methodology is applied to predict demand of intrastate air passengers in Florida. Firstly, factors affecting demand are introduced and relevant data are collected. Gravity models are built through linear regression method. The results show that there is a potential increase on the demand for intrastate travel for some airport pairs in Florida. Findings from the forecasting tool support the results obtained by the mathematical models developed in the first part of this work.

The third component of this thesis is an interactive comparison system built using Excel VBA. The tool allows a passenger to specify personal preferences related to time, cost in order to suggest which travel mode would be more effective based on the individual’s specified parameters.