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Spirit Airlines to announce expanded flight schedule from San Juan

Spirit Airlines is expected to announce today an expansion of its flight schedule from the Luis Muñoz Marín Airport in San Juan, after doing the same at six airports in Florida, this media outlet learned.

This will be the low-cost carrier’s third announcement of added flights and destinations in the past week. Spirit will boost its schedule to and from Orlando, Jacksonville, Ft. Myers, Ft. Lauderdale, Tampa and West Palm beach.

On Monday, the carrier confirmed it is “doubling down” on Jacksonville, where it will launch daily nonstop service to and from Chicago’s O’Hare and Detroit airports starting Dec. 20, as well as to and from Baltimore-Washington International Airport and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, starting Feb. 14, 2019.

“It is so exciting to announce additional service to and from my hometown of Jacksonville before we have even landed our first flight there,” said Laurie Villa, Spirit Airlines’ senior vice president and chief human resources officer.

The announcement came a few days after the carrier revealed the start of more flights and service from Orlando International Airport, where it will add flights to Jamaica, Denver and non-stop service to Bogotá, Medellín, and Cartagena, Colombia.

Before the close of 2018, Orlando will also become home to a new Spirit Airlines crew base, set to begin operating Dec. 1. The new base will bring more than 100 flight attendants and pilots to by the end of the year, with hundreds of more crew jobs expected by spring 2019, the carrier noted.

“We’re excited to be back in Orlando announcing even more destinations,” said Spirit Airlines’ CEO Bob Fornaro. “The new routes to Colombia and upcoming service to Jamaica and Denver, will cap off our largest-ever expansion, and we’ve seen a wonderful response from both our guests and Spirit team members. The future is bright in Orlando.”

Spirit will now offer the Orlando area nonstop service to 39 destinations with up to 50 daily flights across the U.S., Caribbean and Latin America. That new schedule includes daily service between Aguadilla and Orlando, and Santo Domingo and Orlando, which began Oct. 4.

Orlando will also serve as the site of Spirit’s fleet-wide Wi-Fi installation, which it will roll out in 2019 allowing passengers to watch, stream, surf and text in-flight.

Also last week, the carrier confirmed plans to bump up its winter service with 20 seasonal routes to and from Ft. Lauderdale, Ft. Myers, Tampa and West Palm Beach, from Nov. 8 —when the announcement was made — to May 2, 2019.

“These Florida routes provide additional seasonal service to some of our top leisure destinations just in time for the holidays,” said Mark Kopczak, Spirit Airlines’ Vice President of Network Planning. “Whether it’s escaping the winter temperatures or visiting family and friends, we provide our Guests the best service and lowest fares for Florida travel.”

Late last month, Spirit released its fourth quarter financial results, in which it reported $97.5 million in net income, and total operating revenue was $904.3 million, an increase of 31.6 percent compared to the third quarter 2017, driven by a 24.6 percent increase in passenger segments and a 3.0 percent increase in operating yields.

Spirit took delivery of two new A320ceo aircraft during the third quarter 2018, ending the period with 121 aircraft in its fleet. Spirit estimates it will carry approximately 28 million passengers this year, according to the report.

Author Details
Author Details
Business reporter with 30 years of experience writing for weekly and daily newspapers, as well as trade publications in Puerto Rico. My list of former employers includes Caribbean Business, The San Juan Star, and the Puerto Rico Daily Sun, among others. My areas of expertise include telecommunications, technology, retail, agriculture, tourism, banking and most other segments of Puerto Rico’s economy.

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