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Spirit adds 8 new routes, boosts service from rivals’ fortress hubs

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Spirit Airlines is once again adding a slew of new routes that double down on the airline’s recent strategy of boosting service in entrenched hubs of network carriers.

This time, the Dania Beach, Florida-based carrier is launching eight new routes for the peak summer season, all of which touch either Dallas-Fort Worth or Detroit. Spirit spokesperson Tommy Fletcher confirmed the new routes directly with TPG.

Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) is the largest hub for American Airlines, and it hasn’t historically had any head-to-head competition on the five routes that Spirit is adding. Meanwhile, Spirit will add three routes from Detroit, which is also a Delta Air Lines hub.

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You’ll find the full table of the new routes below, but highlights include another expansion in Kansas City, where the airline plans to grow from four to eight routes in just a matter of hours.

(Of the eight new routes announced Tuesday, the two to Kansas City are the only ones that are technically resumptions for Spirit, Cirium schedules show. Spirit used to fly from Detroit to Kansas City as recently as 2021 and from Dallas/Fort Worth to Kansas City in 2015.)

Origin Destination Flights available Launch date
Dallas-Fort Worth Columbus, Ohio Four times weekly July 10
Dallas-Fort Worth Kansas City Four times weekly July 10
Dallas-Fort Worth Memphis Three times weekly July 11
Dallas-Fort Worth Milwaukee Three times weekly July 11
Dallas-Fort Worth San Antonio Two times daily July 10
Detroit  Charleston, South Carolina Four times weekly July 10
Detroit Kansas City Three times weekly July 11
Detroit  Nashville Daily July 10

Earlier this month, Spirit announced that it would add two new routes to the Kansas City International Airport (MCI) from Boston and Newark. This expansion in MCI comes on the heels of JetBlue Airways announcing that it would pull out of the airport. At its peak during 2022, JetBlue flew from MCI to Boston and New York.

Another interesting addition is Spirit’s new 247-mile service from Dallas to San Antonio. This route will operate twice daily and compete head-to-head with the more than 12 daily flights that American Airlines offers on average.

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While Spirit might not be able to attract the local market with just two daily flights, the airline has repeatedly said that it’s trying to boost its portfolio of one-stop connecting itineraries for travelers.

Spirit's 8 new routes
Spirit’s eight new routes. CIRIUM

The airline already operates a base at DFW, so adding new San Antonio service (albeit on a twice-daily basis) might be timed to maximize the number of connections Spirit can offer beyond DFW.

All of these new flights commence just in time for the peak summer season, and it’ll be interesting to see how many are still around when leisure travelers hibernate again for the winter.

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If the airline can successfully convince travelers to book connections, perhaps these flights will indeed make it to the next season. After all, these days, the carrier is looking for a business recovery wherever it can find it.

All of this growth comes despite the airline being fleet-constrained in recent months. Spirit confirmed that it’s not cutting any flights to make room for these new routes.

“We look forward to giving our Guests affordable options to discover more destinations this July with our new, nonstop routes to and from Dallas (DFW) and Detroit (DTW),” said John Kirby, vice president of network planning at Spirit, in a statement. “We know our Guests enjoy saving on their flights, and we’re happy to add these low-fare, high-value flight options for travelers to plan a summer getaway.”