Category Archives: Spirit Airlines

Spirit Airlines announces eleven new routes

Spirit Airlines Airbus A319-132 N506NK (msn 2490) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 930238.

Spirit Airlines has announced it is expanding with 11 new routes. Beginning in March and April of 2018, Spirit will launch new year-round service from Baltimore/Washington, Tampa and Orlando. Spirit will also begin seasonal service to Seattle/Tacoma from four new cities and connect Detroit to San Diego and Portland, Oregon. The new service includes:

ROUTES START DATE FREQUENCY
Baltimore/Washington (BWI)  to/from    
Montego Bay, Jamaica (MBJ) March 22, 2018 Daily, year-round (service subject to government approval)
Denver (DEN) March 22, 2018 Daily, year-round
Tampa (TPA) to/from
Los Angeles (LAX) April 12, 2018 Daily, year-round
Las Vegas (LAS) April 12, 2018 Daily, year-round
Orlando (MCO) to/from
Las Vegas (LAS) April 12, 2018 Daily, year-round
Seattle/Tacoma (SEA) to/from
Fort Lauderdale (FLL) April 12, 2018 Daily, seasonal
Chicago (ORD) April 12, 2018 Daily, seasonal
Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) April 12, 2018 Daily, seasonal
Minneapolis/St. Paul (MSP) April 12, 2018 Daily, seasonal
Detroit (DTW) to/from
Portland, OR (PDX) April 23, 2018 Daily, seasonal
San Diego (SAN) April 23, 2018 Daily, seasonal

This month, Spirit also announced it will begin serving Columbus, Ohio and Richmond, Virginia early next year. These two new cities will bring Spirit’s growing network to 62 total destinations, with even more expected in the year ahead.

Copyright Photo: Spirit Airlines Airbus A319-132 N506NK (msn 2490) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 930238.

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Spirit Airlines is coming to Richmond

Spirit Airlines Airbus A320-232 WL N646NK (msn 7062) BWI (Tony Storck). Image: 933496.

Spirit Airlines has announced it is coming to Richmon, Virginia. Beginning March 15, 2018, Spirit will begin daily, nonstop service from the Richmond International Airport (RIC) to Orlando International Airport (MCO) and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL). Richmond will become the 62nd destination to join Spirit’s growing network, connecting the Old Dominion to the Sunshine State just in time for spring

Copyright Photo: Spirit Airlines Airbus A320-232 WL N646NK (msn 7062) BWI (Tony Storck). Image: 933496.

Spirit Airlines adds Columbus, Ohio to its growing network

Spirit Airlines Airbus A319-132 N503NK (msn 2470) FLL (Tony Storck). Image: 925661.

Spirit Airlines will arrive at John Glenn Columbus International Airport (CMH) on February 15, 2018 with new nonstop service to Orlando, Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Las Vegas, Tampa and Fort Myers. New seasonal service to New Orleans and Myrtle Beach will start on March 22, 2018, providing Columbus with a total of seven new routes to the country’s best vacation hotspots. The new service includes:

Columbus (CMH) to/from Start Date Frequency
Orlando (MCO) February 15, 2018 Daily, year-round
Fort Lauderdale (FLL) February 15, 2018 Daily, year-round
Las Vegas (LAS) February 15, 2018 Daily, year-round
Tampa (TPA) February 15, 2018 Daily, seasonal (ends 4/11/18, resumes 11/8/18
Fort Myers (RSW) February 15, 2018 Daily, seasonal (ends 4/11/18, resumes 11/8/18
New Orleans (MSY) March 22, 2018 3x weekly, seasonal (3/22/18 to 11/7/18)
Myrtle Beach (MYR) March 22, 2018 4x weekly, seasonal (3/23/18 to 11/7/18)

Copyright Photo: Spirit Airlines Airbus A319-132 N503NK (msn 2470) FLL (Tony Storck). Image: 925661.

Spirit Airlines reports its third quarter 2017 results

Spirit Airlines Airbus A321-231 WL N671NK  (msn 7246) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 936852.

Spirit Airlines, Inc. has reported its third quarter 2017 financial results.

  • GAAP net income for the third quarter 2017 was $60.2 million ($0.87 per diluted share), or $65.5 million ($0.94 per diluted share)1 excluding special items.
  • GAAP operating margin for the third quarter 2017 was 15.1 percent, or 16.4 percent excluding special items1.
  • Spirit ended the third quarter 2017 with unrestricted cash, cash equivalents, and short-term investments of $964.4 million.
  • Spirit’s return on invested capital (non-GAAP, before taxes and excluding special items) for the twelve months ended September 30, 2017 was 18.1 percent2.

“Multiple hurricanes during the third quarter 2017 caused us to cancel over 1,650 flights.  In preparation for Irma, we relocated our Systems Operations Control Center and over 305 team members and their families to our backup facility in Detroit where we ran our operations for about a week.  I am very proud of how the Spirit team pulled together to assist our guests and employees in the regions affected by the storms while keeping the rest of the network running smoothly and still delivering solid financial results.  Excluding the impact of these storms, we estimate our third quarter on-time performance would have been 78.5 percent, a 2.2 percentage point improvement year over year,” said Robert Fornaro, Spirit’s President and Chief Executive Officer.  “It was a challenging quarter on many fronts and I want to thank our entire team for their dedication in going the extra mile to care for our guests and volunteering to assist with the relief efforts.”

Spirit carried over 3,000 guests and more than 800 team members and their families to safety, many of whom were elderly or at risk.  We have transported over a 100,000 pounds of relief supplies in joint efforts with the American Red Cross, Airlink Operation, Puerto Rico Care Lift and many others, have pledged to match donations up to $150,000 to the American Red Cross, and are committed to assist with ongoing relief efforts throughout the Caribbean.

Revenue Performance
For the third quarter 2017, Spirit’s total operating revenue was $687.2 million, an increase of 10.6 percent compared to the third quarter 2016, driven by an 11.2 percent increase in flight volume.  During the third quarter 2017, Spirit canceled over 1,650 flights related to Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria.  Spirit estimates these hurricanes, together with the revenue overhang from the pilot work action earlier in the year, negatively impacted third quarter 2017 revenue by approximately $40 million and operating income by approximately $39 million.

Total revenue per available seat mile (TRASM) for the third quarter 2017 decreased 6.3 percent compared to the same period last year, primarily driven by lower passenger yields as a result of aggressive competitive pricing action in many of our markets.

On a per passenger flight segment basis, total revenue for the third quarter 2017 decreased 0.5 percent year over year to $108.96 due to ticket revenue per passenger flight segment decreasing 3.2 percent to $56.48, partially offset by non-ticket revenue per passenger flight segment increasing 2.6 percent to $52.48.

Cost Performance
For the third quarter 2017, total GAAP operating expense, including special items of $8.4 million3, increased 20.0 percent, or $97.0 million, year over year to $583.1 million.  Adjusted operating expense for the third quarter 2017 increased 20.2 percent, or $96.4 million to $574.8 million4. The year-over-year increase in both GAAP and adjusted operating expense was primarily driven by an increase in flight volume, higher passenger re-accommodation expense (recorded within other operating expenses), and higher fuel rates.

Aircraft fuel expense increased in the third quarter 2017 by 29.9 percent, or $36.5 million, compared to the same period last year, due to a 12.2 percent increase in the cost of fuel per gallon and a 15.3 percent increase in fuel gallons consumed.

Spirit reported third quarter 2017 cost per available seat mile (“ASM”), excluding special items and fuel (“Adjusted CASM ex-fuel”), of 5.42 cents4, a decrease of 1.1 percent compared to the same period last year.   The decrease year over year was primarily driven by lower maintenance and salaries, wages, and benefits per ASM, partially offset by higher passenger re-accommodation expense and depreciation and amortization per ASM.

Labor
Spirit and its pilots, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, remain in open contract negotiations under the supervision of the National Mediation Board.

Fleet
Spirit took delivery of three new Airbus A321ceo aircraft and one new A320ceo aircraft and returned one leased A321ceo aircraft during the third quarter 2017, ending the quarter with 107 aircraft in its fleet.

Share Repurchase Authorization
On October 25, 2017, Spirit’s Board of Directors authorized a repurchase program of up to $100 million in aggregate value of shares of Common Stock, par value $0.0001 per share, from time to time in open market or privately negotiated transactions. The authorization will expire on October 25, 2018. The timing and amount of any stock repurchases are subject to prevailing market conditions and other considerations.

Recent New Service Announcements
Boston – New Orleans (11/09/17)
Minneapolis-St. Paul – New Orleans (11/09/17)
Newark – New Orleans (11/09/17)
Tampa – New Orleans (11/09/17)
Newark – Las Vegas (11/09/17)
Chicago – West Palm Beach (11/09/17)*

* Seasonal Service Operates 11/9/17- 4/11/18

Copyright Photo: Spirit Airlines Airbus A321-231 WL N671NK (msn 7246) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 936852.

Airbus delivers first U.S.-produced A320 to Spirit Airlines

The first delivery of an Airbus A320 aircraft (N650NK) from the Airbus U.S. Manufacturing Facility has taken place in Mobile, Alabama. The aircraft, delivered to Spirit Airlines, is the 37th overall delivery from the U.S. facility since production began in July 2015. The previous 36 aircraft were A321 aircraft, making this delivery another important milestone for Airbus.

 

The A320 Family is the world’s best-selling single-aisle product line and comprises four models (A318, A319, A320, A321) Typically seating 150 passengers in two classes, or up to 180 in a high-density layout for charter and low-cost operations, the A320 is in widespread service around the world, flying routes ranging from short commuter sectors to coast-to-coast U.S. flights. To date, the Family has won over 13,200 orders and more than 7,700 aircraft have been delivered to some 400 customers and operators worldwide.

Airbus announced its commitment to build a single-aisle assembly line in Mobile, Alabama in July 2012, and broke ground for the $600 million facility in April 2013. The ceremonial inauguration of the plant took place in September 2015. Airbus anticipates delivering four aircraft per month from the Mobile plant by the end of this year.

Photo: Airbus.

Spirit Airlines:

Spirit Airlines states 2Q results were impacted by 850 pilot-related flight cancellations

Spirit Airlines Airbus A320-232 WL N641NK (msn 6566) BWI (Tony Storck). Image: 928992.

Spirit Airlines, Inc. reported second quarter 2017 financial results.

  • GAAP net income for the second quarter 2017 was $78.1 million ($1.12 per diluted share), or $79.1 million ($1.14 per diluted share)1excluding special items.
  • GAAP operating margin for the second quarter 2017 was 18.9 percent, or 19.1 percent excluding special items1.
  • Spirit ended the second quarter 2017 with unrestricted cash, cash equivalents, and short-term investments of $969.6 million.
  • Spirit’s return on invested capital (non-GAAP, before taxes and excluding special items) for the twelve months ended June 30, 2017 was 20.3 percent2.

“The progress we made with our revenue initiatives, as well as the underlying revenue trends as we headed into the June quarter, were encouraging.  Unfortunately, given the level of operational disruptions and the associated financial impact, the second quarter 2017 performance overall was disappointing. We sincerely apologize to our customers who were affected by the flight disruptions during the quarter,” said Bob Fornaro, Spirit’s President and Chief Executive Officer.  “Despite our financial and operational challenges in the second quarter 2017, the changes in our pricing and revenue management strategies helped to drive year-over-year improvement in passenger and non-ticket revenue per segment — this is the first time in over two and a half years either of these metrics increased year over year.”

Revenue Performance

For the second quarter 2017, Spirit’s total operating revenue was $701.7 million, an increase of 20.1 percent compared to the second quarter 2016, driven by a 9.3 percent increase in flight volume and a 7.1 percent increase in operating yields.

Total revenue per available seat mile (TRASM) for the second quarter 2017 increased 5.7 percent compared to the same period last year. During the second quarter 2017, the Company’s results benefited from the calendar shift of Easter, as well as Company driven revenue initiatives and a strong underlying demand environment.

On a per passenger flight segment basis, total revenue for the second quarter 2017 increased 8.5 percent year over year to $113.07 with ticket revenue per passenger flight segment increasing 13.4 percent to $59.93 and non-ticket per passenger flight segment increasing 3.5 percent to $53.14.

Cost Performance

For the second quarter 2017, total GAAP operating expense, including special items of $1.5 million3, increased 23.1 percent, or $106.6 million, year over year to $568.9 million.  Adjusted operating expense for the second quarter 2017 increased 25.1 percent, or $113.7 million to $567.5 million4. The increase in both GAAP and adjusted operating expense was primarily driven by an increase in flight volume, higher passenger re-accommodation expense (recorded within other operating expenses), and higher fuel rates.

Aircraft fuel expense increased in the second quarter 2017 by 25.7 percent, or $29.1 million, compared to the same period last year, due to a 12.9 percent increase in the cost of fuel per gallon and a 11.1 percent increase in fuel gallons consumed.

Spirit reported second quarter 2017 cost per available seat mile (“ASM”), excluding special items and fuel (“Adjusted CASM ex-fuel”), of 5.83 cents4, an increase of 10.0 percent compared to the same period last year, driven primarily by higher passenger re-accommodation expense per ASM and higher depreciation and amortization per ASM.

Pilot-Related Cancellations

During the second quarter 2017, the Company had over 850 pilot-related flight cancellations.  The Company estimates these pilot-related cancellations adversely impacted its second quarter 2017 results by approximately $45 million (approximately $25 million of revenue loss and $20 million of additional operating costs, primarily related to higher passenger re-accommodation expense).  The Company estimates that had these cancellations not occurred, TRASM for the second quarter would have been up approximately 6.5 percent year over year (with the Easter shift accounting for approximately 400 basis points of the year over year increase) and Adjusted CASM ex-fuel would have been up approximately 2.0 percent year over year.

“While our cost performance for the second quarter was not satisfactory, we do not believe it materially changes our long-term cost outlook and are confident that we will continue to maintain, or grow, our relative cost advantage,” said Ted Christie, Spirit’s Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.

Labor

Spirit and its pilots, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, remain in open contract negotiations under the supervision of the National Mediation Board.

Fleet

Spirit took delivery of three new A320ceo aircraft and one new A321ceo aircraft during the second quarter 2017, ending the quarter with 104 aircraft in its fleet.

Recent New Service Announcements

Hartford – Orlando (4/27/17)
Hartford – Myrtle Beach (4/27/17)*
Akron-Canton – Las Vegas (4/27/17)
Akron-Canton – Myrtle Beach (4/27/17)*
Newark – Houston (4/27/17)
Houston – Seattle (4/27/17)*
Baltimore – New Orleans (5/25/17)
Baltimore – Oakland (5/25/17)*
Baltimore – San Diego (5/25/17)
Baltimore – Seattle (5/25/17)
Cleveland – New Orleans (5/25/17)
Detroit – Oakland (5/25/17)*
Detroit – Seattle ( 5/25/17)*
Orlando – New Orleans (5/25/17)
Pittsburgh – Dallas (5/25/17)
Pittsburgh – Myrtle Beach (5/25/17)*
Hartford – Fort Lauderdale (6/15/17)
Pittsburgh – Fort Lauderdale (6/16/17)
Pittsburgh – Las Vegas (6/22/17)
Pittsburgh – Orlando (6/22/17)
Pittsburgh – Los Angeles (7/13/17)
Pittsburgh – Houston (7/13/17)
Pittsburgh –  Fort Myers (11/9/17)**
Pittsburgh – Tampa (11/9/17)**
Hartford – Fort Myers (11/9/17)**
Hartford – Tampa (11/9/17)**
Baltimore – Cancun (11/9/17)
Chicago – Cancun (11/9/17)

* Seasonal Summer Service
** Seasonal Winter Service

Copyright Photo: Spirit Airlines Airbus A320-232 WL N641NK (msn 6566) BWI (Tony Storck). Image: 928992.

Spirit to serve Newark from Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Orlando and Myrtle Beach

Spirit to serve Newark from Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Orlando and Myrtle Beach

Spirit Airlines commencing on October 30, 2016 will serve Newark Liberty International Airport with daily service to both Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood and Orlando with mainly Airbus A321 aircraft.

Additionally the carrier will add the Newark – Myrtle Beach route with daily flights starting on March 9, 2017 according to Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Spirit Airlines Airbus A321-231 WL N660NK (msn 6804) FLL (Brian McDonough). Image: 931986.

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