Spirit Airlines looks for more A320s to fuel growth

Nov 5, 2019

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Spirit Airlines is looking for more Airbus A320 jets to fuel its planned double-digit growth next year.

The South Florida-based ultra-low-cost-carrier wants to lease up to seven more A320s in 2020, a leasing-industry source familiar with the search confirmed to TPG. If Spirit sources all of the aircraft, it would add 28 new jets to its fleet next year.

The airline is scheduled to take delivery of 21 A320neos in 2020, its fleet plan as of Oct. 24 shows.

Spirit spokesman Erik Hofmeyer confirmed that the airline plans to “supplement” aircraft deliveries from its orderbook with additional leased aircraft next year.

Related: Spirit Airlines plans for ‘several new cities’ next year

A Spirit Airlines Airbus A320 at Baltimore/Washington International Airport. (Photo by Edward Russell/TPG)
A Spirit Airlines Airbus A320 at Baltimore/Washington International Airport. (Photo by Edward Russell/TPG)

The carrier plans to grow capacity by 17-19% year-over-year in 2020, adding “several new cities” to its network, said Spirit chief financial officer Scott Haralson last month. That growth will be fueled by adding aircraft to its fleet.

Spirit operated 136 aircraft, including 62 A320s and 13 A320neos, at the end of September. It plans to fly 145 aircraft by year end.

The airline announced a long-awaited order for up to 150 A320neo family jets in October. The deal, which has yet to be finalized, includes a firm order for 100 A319neo, A320neo and A321neo models, and purchase options for another 50 aircraft. Deliveries of the aircraft are due to begin in 2022 and continue through 2027.

Related: Spirit Airlines commits to buying up to 150 Airbus A320neo family jets

Spirit is one of the fastest-growing ultra-low-cost-carriers in the U.S. It is on track to double in size from 2015 to 2019, growing at a compound annual rate of more than 14%, according to Diio by Cirium schedules. The airline added numerous cities ranging from Austin (AUS) to Newark (EWR) and Sacramento (SMF) to its map over the period, as well as opened new bases including one in Orlando (MCO).

While the carrier has fueled much of this growth through aircraft deliveries from its orderbook, it also has regularly supplemented this with additional leased jets. In the third quarter alone, aircraft advisory shop SkyWorks helped Spirit source and arrange leases for two A320s and 11 A320neos, the firm said in a statement.

Spirit is also investing in an improved customer experience. It plans to roll out its first jet with new seats and a new cabin in December, plans to add inflight wi-fi, and is working on a new loyalty program.

Featured image by Edward Russell/TPG.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,650

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
  • Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.