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Spirit Airlines To Speed Up MD80 Retirements  
User currently offlineMAH4546 From Sweden, joined Jan 2001, 32789 posts, RR: 72
Posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 6573 times:

Spirit Airlines will speed up the retirement of its MD80 fleet, and will now be going all-Airbus in the beginning of 2007, also speeding up deliveries. The MD80s are putting a strain on Spirit's financial performance, as they are expensive to maintain and not fuel efficient. As a result, Spirit will be short on planes as MD80s are going to be retired quicker than the new Airbus arrive, though they will speed Airbus deliveries with $100M in new equity. While the airline is financially stable, they are currently in the red due to fuel costs and their MD80 fleet.

One consequence is that their new Fort Lauderdale-Mexico City route is delayed, once more, and will now start in June 2006. It has also delayed the start of planned trans-cons from FLL (LAX and LAS) because those take up the aircraft for too much time.

Much of their future growth will again be international expansion. Most of this will be from Fort Lauderdale, though, as recent new routes have shown (LGA-NAS, MCO-NAS, and TPA-CUN), it is not limited to FLL. I have been told to expect one more new destination (international) to start from FLL by year's end. If I were to take a wild stab at it, I would say Aruba.

Miami Herald article:
http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/12164387.htm


a.
26 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineDAYflyer From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 3807 posts, RR: 3
Reply 1, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 6489 times:

Interesting that Spirit is going international to this degree. I have never flown on them, but I understand they are privately owned. How is the service?

Makes sense to retire the MD-80 fleet if the Airbuses have that much better operating economics.



One Nation Under God
User currently offlinePVD757 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3413 posts, RR: 16
Reply 2, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 6427 times:

What doesn't make sense to me is that they were already planning on being "all-Airbus" by the beginning of 2007...Not sure what the 100 million is speeding up!

User currently offlinePVD757 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3413 posts, RR: 16
Reply 3, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 6397 times:

"Spirit will lease the aircraft from ILFC, International Lease Finance Corporation. With today’s announcement, Spirit’s fleet consists of four Airbus A321s, 23 MD-80s, and four Airbus A319s. Spirit will deliver six more A319s and two more A321s by the end of the year and has another 23 aircraft on order with options for 50 more. Spirit is committed to becoming an all Airbus fleet by early-2007."

This is pararaph I pasted from a June 3rd press release off the NK website. It clerly states the early 2007 replacement of the MD's. I'm hoping it means they will just have more airbuses in early 2007 than what they originally was planned.

MAH: I've heard AUA too. I was also told that any Central American capitol city is fair game too. GCM could be a weekend destination as well.


User currently offlineMAH4546 From Sweden, joined Jan 2001, 32789 posts, RR: 72
Reply 4, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 6391 times:

Quoting PVD757 (Reply 2):
What doesn't make sense to me is that they were already planning on being "all-Airbus" by the beginning of 2007...Not sure what the 100 million is speeding up!

No, the original plan was all-Airbus by late 2008.



a.
User currently offlinePVD757 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3413 posts, RR: 16
Reply 5, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 6379 times:

Quoting MAH4546 (Reply 4):
No, the original plan was all-Airbus by late 2008.

Yes, maybe, but that's not what NK was advertising only a month ago. (See reply 3...).


User currently offlineQuickmover From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 2494 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 6376 times:

I thought I read somewhere that they are adding the 321s at a rate of replacing 2 md80s with 1 321.

User currently offlineN62NA From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 4471 posts, RR: 7
Reply 7, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 6367 times:

In the article, an "expert" was quoted as saying,

Ray Neidl, airline analyst with Calyon Securities, said Spirit needs the cash infusion.

''Because of their older fleet and sky-high fuel prices, they probably have been disproportionately affected more than any other airline,'' he said.


I don't know if I agree with that statement. Look at the huge AA M80 fleet, the huge DL M80 fleet, not to mention the NW DC9 fleet.


User currently offlineMAH4546 From Sweden, joined Jan 2001, 32789 posts, RR: 72
Reply 8, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 6365 times:

Quoting Quickmover (Reply 6):
I thought I read somewhere that they are adding the 321s at a rate of replacing 2 md80s with 1 321.

Yes. I don't know the exact rates, but new planes are coming slower than they are leaving. This has had them reduce some service. DTW-PVD/ACY have been cut, as have ORD-LAX/LAS/TPA, while frequencies on FLL-PVD/ACY have been shaved too.

Quoting PVD757 (Reply 5):
Yes, maybe, but that's not what NK was advertising only a month ago. (See reply 3...).

True, guess the Herald and Sun Sentinel just caught on to it with the news of a new $100M in equity.



a.
User currently offlineSHUPirate1 From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3670 posts, RR: 16
Reply 9, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 6304 times:

MAH-Any idea where Spirit's MD-80's are going? Could American be acquiring yet another handful?


Burma's constitutional referendum options: A. Yes, B. Go to Insein Prison!
User currently offlineD950 From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 493 posts, RR: 2
Reply 10, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 6263 times:

Quoting SHUPirate1 (Reply 9):
Any idea where Spirit's MD-80's are going? Could American be acquiring yet another handful?

At least one went to SwiftAir CC-JSS. They had a few relatively low hour MD83's that should end up somwhere other than the desert, (Allegiant??)



Resting on your laurels is a synonym for flirting with disaster
User currently offlineSHUPirate1 From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3670 posts, RR: 16
Reply 11, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 6251 times:

D950-I'm sorry, I wasn't clear...that second comment was supposed to be tongue-in-cheek...


Burma's constitutional referendum options: A. Yes, B. Go to Insein Prison!
User currently offlineMAH4546 From Sweden, joined Jan 2001, 32789 posts, RR: 72
Reply 12, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 6241 times:

Quoting SHUPirate1 (Reply 9):
MAH-Any idea where Spirit's MD-80's are going? Could American be acquiring yet another handful?

Considering AA has their own MD80s in storage, I don't think they need ones that are in pretty bad shape (not the mechanicals, but the interiors).



a.
User currently offlineKappel From Suriname, joined Jul 2005, 3533 posts, RR: 17
Reply 13, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 6207 times:

Quoting N62NA (Reply 7):
I don't know if I agree with that statement. Look at the huge AA M80 fleet, the huge DL M80 fleet, not to mention the NW DC9 fleet.

Yeah, but those airlines are also deeply in the red. So that's not really a good example. They may or may not be in the red because of their dc9/md80 fleet, but still..



L1011,733,734,73G,738,743,744,752,763,772,77W,DC855,DC863,DC930,DC950,MD11,MD88,306,319,320,321,343,346,ARJ85,CR7,E195
User currently offlineLightsaber From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 13134 posts, RR: 100
Reply 14, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 6164 times:
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Quoting MAH4546 (Thread starter):
The MD80s are putting a strain on Spirit's financial performance, as they are expensive to maintain and not fuel efficient.

Interesting. I have a pdf showing summer 2000 costs for these airframes per flight hour:

http://www.icao.int/icao/en/ro/Allpirg/allpirg4/wp28app.pdf

A319: $1,458/hour ("other") + $698/hour (fuel)= $2,156/hour (at $30/bbl oil)
MD80: $1,726/hour ("other") +$559/hour (fuel)= $2,285/hour (at $30/bbl oil)

Ok, the MD80 fuel burn seems low... The article states 799 gal/hour for the MD-80 and 821 gal/hour for the A319 for the fuel consumption... So for some reason it has the A319 paying more per gallon! Putting in the same cost per gallon, I get the MD80 at FY2000 mx costs is about 110% of the cost of an A319. ($2,805 for the MD80 vs. $2,566 for the A319 assuming fuel is $1.35/gallon). Can anyone confirm/deny the fuel burn rates? Otherwise, I would conclude its mx killing the MD80, not fuel burn.

Lightsaber



Societies that achieve a critical mass of ideas achieve self sustaining growth; others stagnate.
User currently offlineYyz717 From Canada, joined Sep 2001, 16282 posts, RR: 56
Reply 15, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 6069 times:

Quoting MAH4546 (Thread starter):
The MD80s are putting a strain on Spirit's financial performance, as they are expensive to maintain and not fuel efficient.

Then why is this not the case for AA who continue to operate the M80 as their primary US trunk aircraft? Given that AA yields are likely higher than Spirit's, I would have assumed that Spirit would retain its M80's for a longer period than AA.

I find it hard to believe that a high-capital/lease-cost 321/319 fleet has superior financial performance than an M80 fleet for a low-yield carrier.



Panam, TWA, Ansett, Eastern.......AC next? Might be good for Canada.
User currently offlineMAH4546 From Sweden, joined Jan 2001, 32789 posts, RR: 72
Reply 16, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 6051 times:

I don't know the details, just repeating what has been said.

Remember that many of AA's MD80s are pretty new. Some are only seven years old. They have the last MD80 ever built in their fleet. NK's MD80s are aging, acquired second hand, and performance nightmares.



a.
User currently offlineLowecur From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 585 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 6025 times:

I have been speaking with a Spirit pilot and he insists the company has had numerous conversations with Embraer in the last 90 days. This is of course speculation, but he has been a reliable source of information in the past.

If you think about it, Spirit, the new US Airways, and Jetblue all have designs on the Carribean, Latin America, Mexico, and the Bahamas. Jetblue plans to use their 190 extensively in these markets from either FLL or MIA, and US Airways will eventually expand their base in FLL as the new company emerges.


User currently offlineNkops From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 2665 posts, RR: 6
Reply 18, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 5978 times:

Quoting Lightsaber (Reply 14):
Ok, the MD80 fuel burn seems low... The article states 799 gal/hour for the MD-80 and 821 gal/hour for the A319

I disagree with this figure... I can tell you from having both the A319 and the M80 do the ACY-TPA run, that the A319 is always dispatched with much less fuel. M80 is usually around 25.0, where the A319 is around 21.0



I have no association with Spirit Airlines
User currently offlineKarlB737 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 3105 posts, RR: 10
Reply 19, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 3 hours ago) and read 5928 times:

More on this topic:

Courtesy: The Detroit Free Press

http://www.freep.com/money/business/spirit19e_20050719.htm


User currently offlineMAH4546 From Sweden, joined Jan 2001, 32789 posts, RR: 72
Reply 20, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 5875 times:

Quoting KarlB737 (Reply 19):
More on this topic:

Courtesy: The Detroit Free Press

http://www.freep.com/money/business/...9.htm

Very poorly titled. They make it seem like Spirit wouldn't exist without this injection of cash, which is not true. They are losing money thanks to high fuel and maintence costs, but they are financially stable.



a.
User currently offlinePVD757 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3413 posts, RR: 16
Reply 21, posted (9 years 2 months 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 5860 times:

Quoting MAH4546 (Reply 20):
Very poorly titled. They make it seem like Spirit wouldn't exist without this injection of cash, which is not true. They are losing money thanks to high fuel and maintence costs, but they are financially stable.

I agree. The fleet replacement was a good finacial decision either way. Speeding up the process became more of a priority with the higher energy costs. Having the level of short term fuel hedges in place that they have is also a very smart move. At a minimum, it caps that line item in the expense column...


User currently offlineSA006 From South Africa, joined Sep 2003, 1883 posts, RR: 54
Reply 22, posted (9 years 2 months 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 5481 times:

I think this means more MD-82's for South African LCC Kulula. Kulula already have 2 former NK MD-82's (ZS-OPU , ZS-OBG)

-SA006



Proudly South African
User currently offlineLightsaber From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 13134 posts, RR: 100
Reply 23, posted (9 years 2 months 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 4936 times:
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Quoting Nkops (Reply 18):
I disagree with this figure... I can tell you from having both the A319 and the M80 do the ACY-TPA run, that the A319 is always dispatched with much less fuel. M80 is usually around 25.0, where the A319 is around 21.0

Thanks. There is a reason I asked on the fuel, the numbers seemed too favorable to the MD80. What units are the ACY-TPY runs in?

Lightsaber



Societies that achieve a critical mass of ideas achieve self sustaining growth; others stagnate.
User currently offlineN1120A From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 26499 posts, RR: 75
Reply 24, posted (9 years 2 months 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 4922 times:

Quoting Lightsaber (Reply 14):
A319: $1,458/hour ("other") + $698/hour (fuel)= $2,156/hour (at $30/bbl oil)
MD80: $1,726/hour ("other") +$559/hour (fuel)= $2,285/hour (at $30/bbl oil)

Ok, the MD80 fuel burn seems low... The article states 799 gal/hour for the MD-80 and 821 gal/hour for the A319 for the fuel consumption... So for some reason it has the A319 paying more per gallon! Putting in the same cost per gallon, I get the MD80 at FY2000 mx costs is about 110% of the cost of an A319. ($2,805 for the MD80 vs. $2,566 for the A319 assuming fuel is $1.35/gallon). Can anyone confirm/deny the fuel burn rates? Otherwise, I would conclude its mx killing the MD80, not fuel burn.

Well, the MD-80 is the larger aircraft, so it is likely to be sent out with more fuel. Any comparison of the MD-80 to the A320?



Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
25 Lightsaber : Same link as post 14: A320: $1520/hour ("other") + $753/hour (fuel) or 886 gal/hour =$2,273 when oil was $30/bbl Note: I expect the MD80 maintenance
26 Nkops : Don't quite understand the question...
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