Spirit adds 2 new routes from Atlantic City, including its first international flight from the airport

Jul 20, 2021

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Spirit Airlines will try its luck in Atlantic City.

On Tuesday, the Miramar, Florida-based carrier announced a notable expansion at its operating base in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Spirit is adding two new routes, including the airlines first international flight from the airport.

Service to Cancun, Mexico (CUN), will take off with four weekly flights on Oct. 29, followed on Oct. 31 by three weekly flights to San Juan, Puerto Rico (SJU).

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Additionally, as part of the news, Spirit reaffirmed its commitment to launching the previously announced route from Miami (MIA) to Atlantic City on Oct. 6 with daily service.

Spirit’s expansion in Atlantic City brings the carrier to ten destinations from the city. This summer, the airline’s operation in ACY is 35% larger than it was in 2019, which, according to Spirit, is due to increasing demand for air travel.

Spirit is the only major U.S. airline operating flights from Atlantic City. Thanks to its close proximity to both Philadelphia and Newark, Atlantic City offers a convenient alternative for those living in between the two major East Coast airports.

To date, other U.S. airlines have skipped over Atlantic City, in favor of the larger airports nearby. United was the last big domestic network carrier to serve the city in December 2014, per Cirium schedules. (Air Canada was actually the last major airline to fly there in September 2015.)

Related: Spirit to enter Miami with 30 routes in major competitive shake-up

So, Spirit’s enjoyed a nearly six-year run as the monopolist in Atlantic City. Now, the airline is ready to cross the border for the first time since establishing service there. 

In 2012, the airport opened an expanded terminal, which included a federal inspection station providing the ability to process international travelers. When the facility opened, the airport “pursued international air carriers and air service routes,” but nothing ever came to fruition. (Air Canada’s flights from Toronto were treated as domestic service since there is a U.S. customs pre-clearance facility in the Pearson International Airport.)

Now, the customs facility will handle its first scheduled international flights. It’s anyone’s guess how Spirit will fare, but it’s certainly hoping to beat the odds.

Featured photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy

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