Spirit Airlines plans first international routes from New Orleans

Mar 2, 2020

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Spirit Airlines will add its first international routes from New Orleans this June, connecting the city with Cancun and San Pedro Sula, Honduras.

The South Florida-based ultra-low-cost-carrier will begin service between New Orleans (MSY) and Cancun (CUN) on June 10, and San Pedro Sula (SAP) on June 11, Spirit unveiled Monday. The Cancun route will operate four-times weekly and San Pedro Sula three-times weekly.

Spirit operates Airbus A320 family jets.

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The new routes come amid growing concerns in the U.S. about travel demand due to the outbreak of COVID-19, a member of the coronavirus family. American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Hawaiian Airlines and United Airlines have all suspended select long-haul flights due to the outbreak, while primarily domestic carriers Alaska Airlines and JetBlue Airways are offering passengers waivers if they wish to defer travel due to the disease.

The Cancun and San Pedro Sula routes will be Spirit’s first international services from New Orleans. It already serves 20 domestic destinations nonstop from the airport, where it was the fifth largest airline carrying a little over 11% of New Orleans’ 12.5 million passengers during the first 11 months of 2019.

Spirit joins the growing ranks of airlines offering international services from New Orleans. British Airways and Condor connect the Louisiana city to Europe, while Delta Air Lines and Southwest Airlines both fly between New Orleans and Cancun, according to Cirium schedules.

Related: Spirit Airlines adds new California route from Fort Lauderdale hub

The discounter will be the only carrier serving San Pedro Sula from New Orleans, which it says is home to a large Honduran population.

New Orleans opened a new 35-gate passenger terminal in November. The facility replaced a terminal that first opened in 1959.

Spirit plans to grow capacity by 17-19% year-over-year in 2020. In addition to the New Orleans additions, it is adding new routes from Austin (AUS) and Nashville (BNA) in February and March, and will add two new routes to Colombia from Fort Lauderdale (FLL) in April.

The growth comes as Spirit continues to invest in an improved passenger experience. These investments include new seats and a new cabin, as well as inflight Wi-Fi and an updated loyalty program.

Related: Check out Spirit Airlines’ first jet with its new seats and cabin

Featured image courtesy of Spirit Airlines.

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