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masseybrown
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New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 6:20 pm

Ben Baldanza, Spirit CEO, told Bloomberg reporters that Spirit likes to fly from big cities to big cities. He also said during an earnings conference in May that Spirit was likely to start up two more new cities this year.

Possibilities among the big or biggish include: SFO, IAD, SEA, STL, CLE, BNA, IND, and others. SFO and IAD would compete with existing operations in OAK and BWI, but Spirit seems to be souring on peripheral airports. Any bets for the new two?

With eleven 320s due for delivery in the 4th quarter, I'm guessing Spirit will announce something in August.
 
MAH4546
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 6:33 pm

Quoting MasseyBrown (Thread starter):
Possibilities among the big or biggish include: SFO, IAD, SEA, STL, CLE, BNA, IND, and others. SFO and IAD would compete with existing operations in OAK and BWI, but Spirit seems to be souring on peripheral airports. Any bets for the new two?

Spirit is in talks to move the bulk of it's FLL operations to MIA.
a.
 
Prost
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 7:05 pm

Beats me on where Spirit would get gates here in SEA, but I'm guessing the Port of Seattle would bend over backwards to accommodate them.
 
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jfklganyc
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 7:35 pm

How about returning to JFK and entering the transcon/florida/lcc market?
 
727LOVER
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 7:37 pm

Quoting jfklganyc (Reply 3):
returning to JFK

When was NK @ JFK??????
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F9Animal
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 8:03 pm

Just waiting for them to announce SEA. I think they will do really good here.
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catdaddy63
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 8:15 pm

TUL will have a couple of gates available once the concourse A renovation is complete mid 2015. NK could offer service to DFW with connections onward. WN is reducing TUL-DAL this fall and fares from TUL to many markets are quite high. Business travelers will still use AA and WN but the budget traveler would try NK, fees and all. G4 seems to be doing fine with its flights to SFB.
 
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knope2001
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 8:24 pm

Given Spirit's Florida presence something that comes to mind is some relatively large markets to FL are essentially WN monopolies since they bought AirTran. Florida flights alone may not be enough to justify Spirit coming to such a market but it could push some places into serious contention. At very least they must have that on their radar to watch.
 
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SANFan
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 8:24 pm

Spirit has been quite conspicuous by their absence in the Seattle area for a few years now -- ever since they announced their west coast trifecta of PDX, OAK and SAN in the Fall of 2011.

There must have been pretty good reason for them to avoid SEA or BLI at that time (cost of doing business at SEA/TAC, competition, ???) and I'm not sure I understand what might've changed to make it doable now for them? In fact, with the battle that's going on there now, seems to me it might a good place to continue to avoid.

I always thought that maybe they were waiting for Paine Field to become a viable airport but I don't believe that's really much of an option any more, due to both the situation at Paine and the changes in Spirit's business model lately, such as fewer secondary airports.

STL, CLE and BNA seem the most likely of the list in the OP but depending on the definition of "big city" there would seem lots of other possibilities as well. How about SLC, AUS, SAT, or more Mexico?

bb
 
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jfklganyc
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 9:09 pm

First airport they served in NYC back in the 90s.

Catch the spirit of spirit airlines. Myrtle beach I believe
 
Prost
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 9:24 pm

Although not their current business plan, I can see Spirit flights from Paine Field to Vegas, LA and Phoenix as having a modicum of success. I also think it will help solidify PNW folks love of Alaska Airlines.
 
a318
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 9:27 pm

I've always thought IND was a hole in their route map; I'd also like to see FLL-MCI (nonstop) too for my own personal gains.
 
FWAERJ
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 10:06 pm

IIRC, NK once said that IND was too expensive of an airport for its size for their business model. Maybe the IAA is cooking up a big incentive deal for them to enter IND (which wouldn't surprise me as it's one of those airlines that any airport would die to have).

IND-MYR would be a perfect fit as the market is huge with no nonstop (a few even drive up to FWA during G4's seasonal service), and IND-Florida/IND-LAS would also work because of the post-WN/FL merger cutbacks. I don't think that NK would serve business cities from IND, as they are very well-served by the legacies and it's the leisure routes that are crying for ULCC competition the most. WN's stranglehold on those vacation nonstops plus the fact that WN is as expensive as the legacies many times add up to a perfect opportunity for NK. That said, I think that NK is the airline that Indy (both the city and the a.net user) is waiting for.

Whether NK at IND would be good for FWA is a different story, as FWA has suffered from LCCs at IND in the past such as TZ. But since then, FWA now has a vacation-oriented ULCC in the form of G4. They already serve most potential NK vacation cities from IND and could add the others (LAS, FLL) easily, so any impact would be less dramatic than in years past.
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SANFan
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 10:22 pm

Quoting FWAERJ (Reply 12):
IIRC, NK once said that IND was too expensive of an airport for its size for their business model.

And I think perhaps the same can be said about SEA. But the "new" Spirit might not be as worried about that factor as they used to be. (And sure, perhaps those communities could pony up subsidies to help land NK -- but remember that the airport itself can't do anything besides the fairly standard incentive programs that I'm sure IND already has in place.)

It would be interesting if IND were selected by Spirit. There might then be a chance of seeing a nonstop to SAN, one of the largest markets currently from SAN without nonstop service. (And I believe I remember that SAN is pretty on IND's list of desired destinations as well.)

bb
 
LV
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 11:43 pm

Quoting FWAERJ (Reply 12):
IIRC, NK once said that IND was too expensive of an airport for its size for their business model. Maybe the IAA is cooking up a big incentive deal for them to enter IND (which wouldn't surprise me as it's one of those airlines that any airport would die to have).

I seem to remember hearing IND just got a new Executive Director.... landing NK would cement his place in the airport and set him apart from his predecessor.

That being said, I think CLE and STL are my main guesses. Maybe MKE now that the battle there has died down.
 
LoneStarMike
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Fri Jun 06, 2014 11:46 pm

Quoting SANFan (Reply 8):
How about SLC, AUS, SAT

I think SAT or AUS would both be good choices.

SAT doesn't have any domestic ULCC carriers.

AUS has Frontier (to DEN) and Allegiant (4 times per week to LAS) If Spirit is moving it's FLL operations to MIA, then I think a AUS-MIA would work, especially considering the connections to the Caribbean/South America. Also, MIA is one of Austin's "target markets" and would would qualify for incentives.

See page 10 of this document (pdf file)

(We've been waiting for about 10 years now for AA to start AUS-MIA, and it still hasn't happened.)

Currently, the cost per enplaned passenger at AUS is $8.86. I'm not sure how that compares with some of the other possible airports mentioned in this thread.

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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 12:47 am

What about MKE? Plenty of open gates and I thought MKE was mentioned once upon a time.
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slcdeltarumd11
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 1:15 am

I would say SLC made total sense until alaska came in and invaded the common use gates. FLL redeye, LAS, LAX, SAN all would have been good but i see chances right now at close to zero.

I would also say SEA is the most likely but the AS/DL rivalry is a factor to consider. Spirit might not mind rolling into town though, they can certainly compete in the fare wars.
 
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TWA772LR
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 2:04 am

I can see NK make a nice home in MEM.
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HeeseokKoo
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 2:19 am

Quoting LoneStarMike (Reply 15):
I think SAT or AUS would both be good choices.

SAT doesn't have any domestic ULCC carriers.

Spirit used to serve SAT from FLL, at around 2008-2009. And left the city.
 
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ERJ170
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 2:33 am

So I decided to look at the top 40 airports in the US and then removed all that were served by Spirit already.. The following are the airports, from largest to smallest, currently unserved by Spirit.

MIA (services FLL)
JFK (services LGA)
SFO (services OAK)
CLT
SEA
IAD (services BWI, DCA?)
SLC
MDW (services ORD)
HNL
STL
HOU (services IAH)
AUS RDU
SNA (services LAX)
SMF

I would guess two of the above, but which two? And just cause they service a nearby airport, does that mean they will not service another in the region?
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YQBexYHZBGM
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 2:34 am

They're not on the list, but I believe SYR, ALB and ROC would be good markets for Spirit.

-Al
YQBexYHZBGM
 
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 2:41 am

Quoting ERJ170 (Reply 20):
MIA (services FLL)
JFK (services LGA)
SFO (services OAK)
CLT
SEA
IAD (services BWI, DCA?)
SLC
MDW (services ORD)
HNL
STL
HOU (services IAH)
AUS RDU
SNA (services LAX)
SMF

PIT is not in the top 40?
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ERJ170
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 2:44 am

PIT is number 46 on the list

BUF is number 57

SYR and ROC unknown
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silentbob
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:10 am

Quoting YQBexYHZBGM (Reply 21):
They're not on the list, but I believe SYR, ALB and ROC would be good markets for Spirit.

I think ISP could work, as well.
 
doulasc
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:11 am

How about CMH-Columbus Ohio Im sure Spirit might sustain a FLL-CMH
 
CIDFlyer
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:15 am

Quoting YQBexYHZBGM (Reply 21):
They're not on the list, but I believe SYR, ALB and ROC would be good markets for Spirit.

Our airport director here at CID mentioned NK was really looking into a CID-DFW flight. CID is in no means one of the top airports in the country but does serve over 1 million pax a year. I am wondering if/when NK would maybe focus on some of those type of markets? I hope they dont box themselves in by only serving large markets like WN does. Smaller airports can make a lot of money also...look at G4 & F9.
 
prosa
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:23 am

Quoting silentbob (Reply 24):
I think ISP could work, as well.

Could be. NK didn't last long when it started service to ISP in 2008 or 2009, but the economy is better today.
"Let me think about it" = the coward's way of saying "no"
 
prosa
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:36 am

Quoting FWAERJ (Reply 12):
NK once said that IND was too expensive of an airport for its size for their business model. Maybe the IAA is cooking up a big incentive deal for them to enter IND (which wouldn't surprise me as it's one of those airlines that any airport would die to have).

If IND is just too expensive, what about upgrading the facilities at MQJ and using that instead? MQJ is close to I-70, seems to have ample space for expanded facilities, and while the main runway is short it's about the same length as SNA.
"Let me think about it" = the coward's way of saying "no"
 
slcdeltarumd11
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 4:40 am

Mem might be smart city for them too try
 
masseybrown
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 6:16 am

If we look at Combined Statistical Areas as a proxy for airport catchment areas and a measure of Baldanza's 'big', the largest lacking Spirit service are (in order):

SEA (13th largest)
CLE (15th)
STL (19th)
PIT (20th)
CLT (21st)
SMF (22nd)
SLC (24th)
CMH (25th)

The picks should probably come from this list.

OT: Anybody else listen to Spirit's conference calls? Baldanza is infectiously enthusiastic.  

[Edited 2014-06-06 23:16:50]
 
Prost
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 6:51 am

CLE may be more attractive than SEA considering the well known challenges Seattle has, and UA closing the CLE hub. STL has a large WN presence, but NK can undercut theem.
 
IndianicWorld
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 6:58 am

Its amazing to see how rapidly the LCC carriers have gravitated back from the secondary options to the main airports.

They now realise that it is important to broaden their pax base, other than reducing yields to fill aircraft from the remote option.

This is a good move, which will allow them to service secondary airports when they have a decent market of their own, but will re-focus their ops to take advantage of a bigger city airport when it can.

[Edited 2014-06-06 23:59:33]
 
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mariner
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 7:09 am

Quoting IndianicWorld (Reply 32):
Its amazing to see how rapidly the LCC carriers have gravitated back from the secondary options to the main airports.

Spirit was never big on secondary airports. As the CEO said in the OP, they like flying from big airports to big airports. Here's its route map from 2008:

http://www.anna.aero/2008/08/15/fort-lauderdales-spirit-in-the-sky/



mariner
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LV
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 7:42 am

I had no idea that NK flew into CAE at one time.
 
IndianicWorld
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 7:49 am

Quoting mariner (Reply 33):
Spirit was never big on secondary airports. As the CEO said in the OP, they like flying from big airports to big airports. Here's its route map from 2008:

It wasn't purely related to Spirit, but airlines like Ryanair and Southwest who have changed their business models to capture new opportunities and make defensive moves to combat competitors.

Spirit has made moves in the past, including moving flights from AZA to PHX, along with potentially shifting its FLL ops to MIA, which are designed to strengthen its market position. It has not been immune from this itself, but at least it had more of a history of operating into major airports in the past, as you pointed out.
 
INFINITI329
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 9:41 am

Quoting YQBexYHZBGM (Reply 21):
They're not on the list, but I believe SYR, ALB and ROC would be good markets for Spirit.

College markets.. could appeal to the college student on a budget
 
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RWA380
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 10:13 am

Quoting Prost (Reply 2):
Beats me on where Spirit would get gates here in SEA, but I'm guessing the Port of Seattle would bend over backwards to accommodate them.

NK has been serving PDX for years, with flights to LAS, SAN, DFW & ORD. IMO, NK was testing the NW waters at PDX to see if it may be worth challenging AS at SEA. Things have changed in Seattle since NK started PDX, IMO, they would be smart to stay out of the fray until the dust settles a bit. NK uses one gate at PDX, mostly early AM or late PM. Not sure if SEA has one common use gate, that NK could access or not.
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kgaiflyer
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 1:02 pm

Quoting ERJ170 (Reply 20):
IAD (services BWI, DCA?)

BWI works because of good interstate connections to southern Pennsylvania and northern Delaware (a different customer base than DCA had). I'm guessing it would work the same at IAD bringing in potential fliers from outside-the-beltway Virginia and West Virginia.
 
FWAERJ
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 1:17 pm

Quoting prosa (Reply 28):
If IND is just too expensive, what about upgrading the facilities at MQJ and using that instead? MQJ is close to I-70, seems to have ample space for expanded facilities, and while the main runway is short it's about the same length as SNA.

The Indianapolis Airport Authority runs both IND and MQJ (along with three other airports). There is no way that the IAA would offer lower fees at MQJ for pax service, as it would cannibalize IND.
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GentFromAlaska
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 1:31 pm

Quoting infiniti329 (Reply 36):
College markets.. could appeal to the college student on a budget

A Megabus model for the skies. In reality NK is probably the closest air carrier to it now. There Caribbean destinations would be attractive to the college crowds.
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enilria
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 1:48 pm

Quoting MasseyBrown (Thread starter):
Ben Baldanza, Spirit CEO, told Bloomberg reporters that Spirit likes to fly from big cities to big cities. He also said during an earnings conference in May that Spirit was likely to start up two more new cities this year.

No surprise there.

Quoting MasseyBrown (Thread starter):
BNA, IND,

I tend to think those are on the line for size.

Quoting F9Animal (Reply 5):

Just waiting for them to announce SEA. I think they will do really good here.

That might happen, but I doubt it would be better than DEN and they don't seem to be doing well (compared to DFW and IAH) there from looking at the data.

Quoting catdaddy63 (Reply 6):
TUL will have

Too small I think

Quoting LoneStarMike (Reply 15):
I think SAT or AUS would both be good choices.

Maybe SAT

Quoting HermansCVR580 (Reply 16):
What about MKE?

I have my doubts. I can see CLE.

Quoting TWA772LR (Reply 18):
I can see NK make a nice home in MEM.

Too small I think

Quoting silentbob (Reply 24):
I think ISP could work, as well.

They aren't doing alternates any more. I doubt this one.

Quoting MasseyBrown (Reply 30):
SLC (24th)

I can see this. They like picking on DL and flying routes in WN cities that WN is skipping over.
 
nkops
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:18 pm

Quoting silentbob (Reply 24):
I think ISP could work, as well.

To my knowledge , they have done ISP twice... can't see a third happening

Quoting LV (Reply 34):
I had no idea that NK flew into CAE at one time.

It lasted less than a year.. was 2 daily to FLL
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RWA380
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sun Jun 08, 2014 8:32 am

Quoting MasseyBrown (Thread starter):
Spirit likes to fly from big cities to big cities

Since I saw that poseted 08/08 map was posted, I stared at the current online route map, and quite a difference it is.
NK isn't afraid to fly routes the big boys do, several of their flights operate at less than favorable hours (not even most, but several) but unfavorable times combined with low fares, they still can fill planes on busy routes.

Quoting MasseyBrown (Thread starter):
Spirit was likely to start up two more new cities this year
Quoting MasseyBrown (Thread starter):
SFO, IAD, SEA, STL, CLE, BNA, IND, and others. SFO and IAD would compete with existing operations in OAK and BWI,

I think with OAK & IAD presence, BWI & SFO are long shots, people will drive or rail/bus to get to a close by NK city if they really want to get the lowest fare. For the rest listed I can see STL & CLE. BNA (maybe LAS-BNA) IND seem a bit small, but so does CMH and they bring up the bottom of the top 25.

Quoting MasseyBrown (Reply 30):
SEA (13th largest)
CLE (15th)
STL (19th)
PIT (20th)
CLT (21st)
SMF (22nd)
SLC (24th)
CMH (25th)

I'm not sure where NK would fly to/from CLE, STL, PIT or CLT except FLL. SMF & SLC should be east bound, I don't think FLL would work.

I'd like to see NK offer MSP-PDX/DTW & since F9 dropped it before starting, I think PDX-STL could work. If NK did decide to try SEA, I'd love to see SEA-MSP/DTW and maybe SEA-DFW. I do not think NK would want to jump into the SEA-West Coast foray currently.
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sun Jun 08, 2014 8:49 am

Quoting RWA380 (Reply 43):
MSP-PDX/DTW

Already flies MSP-DTW 1x daily.
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mariner
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sun Jun 08, 2014 9:05 am

Quoting RWA380 (Reply 43):
I'd like to see NK offer MSP-PDX/DTW & since F9 dropped it before starting, I think PDX-STL could work.

Frontier hasn't dropped PDX-STL - it starts next week-end. It's seasonal but it was always intended to be so.

mariner
aeternum nauta
 
slcdeltarumd11
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sun Jun 08, 2014 9:13 am

SLC-FLL would be great because there is plenty of space using a common gate for a redeye and its an unserved route. With AS begging for more space at SLC with the common use gates I don't see how they could squeeze a full schedule. The airport does want spirit though they have said it in meetings but alaska is a whole new focus city thing going on, who knows
 
GentFromAlaska
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sun Jun 08, 2014 12:49 pm

Looking at the NK route map https://www.spirit.com/routemaps.aspx STL may be a but close to MCI which NK begins flying in August. Another fast growing city city which deserves attention is CLT
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kgaiflyer
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sun Jun 08, 2014 1:01 pm

Quoting RWA380 (Reply 43):
I think with OAK & IAD presence, BWI & SFO are long shots

NK moved from DCA to BWI almost two years ago for the very reasons you state.

IAD would address the southern sprawl of DC just as BWI addresses the northern sprawl.
 
Flaps
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RE: New Cities For Spirit

Sun Jun 08, 2014 1:10 pm

It definitely wont be PIT as NK already covers the market via LBE. In fact NK just announced service from LBE to RSW and TPA in addition to the existing MCO/FLL/MYR services.

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Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos