Spirit Airlines is trying a bit of a different strategy: taking a page out of the Allegiant playbook, they have announced new service from tertiary cities to Ft Lauderdale and Myrtle Beach beginning next January. Spirit will roll out flights from Plattsburgh (NY), Latrobe (PA), Niagara Falls, Charleston (WV) and Dallas (OK, not a tertiary city) to FLL and roughly the same cities (swapping Washington DC for Dallas) to Myrtle Beach.
Although Allegiant serves Plattsburgh – FLL, they will stay out of their way, only offering overlapping flights on Saturdays. Latrobe, Niagara Falls and Charleston are all new service, though not daily (Dallas is double-daily). Spirit’s domestic service to FLL has typically been daily, so this 4x/week service to small cities is likely a test to see if they can mimic that Allegiant strategy. Given Spirit’s strong ancillary revenues (and propensity to pull out of cities that don’t work immediately), I bet we’ll see them expand using this strategy over the coming years.