Spirit Airbus A320
Spirit Airbus A320 © Luke Sobiechowski / Travel Radar

Low-cost carriers Frontier and Spirit are set to merge in what will create the largest low-fare airline in North America.

The merger, set to be completed by the end of the year, will create an airline boasting estimated revenues of $5.3 billion, with operating savings of $500 million annually.

Frontier Airlines Airbus A319
Frontier Airlines A319 © Andres Porco / Travel Radar

Low-cost air travel goes from strength to strength 

As yet another sign that low-cost air travel in North America is continuing to go from strength to strength, the merger is being hailed as a win for consumers, employees, and even residents of communities historically underserved by air travel.

Travellers are being promised 1,000 daily flights on offer, to over 145 destinations in 19 countries, along with colossal savings of $1 billion annually. The new airline pledges its services will continue to grow post-merger too as it will have on order over 350 new aircraft.

‘Operation efficiencies’ promise an evermore reliable service for travellers, in addition to expanded frequent flyer offerings and membership opportunities. 10,000 direct jobs are expected to be created and all current  employees have been assured they will be offered roles at the new combined airline.

‘America’s Greenest Airline’

At a time when air travel’s sustainability is regularly drawn into question, the new company is promising to be ‘America’s greenest airline’ and boasts the youngest and most efficient fleet in the region. But environmentally conscious travellers may yet to be convinced.

File:Airbus A320neo landing 04.jpg
The new airline will have the largest fleet of A320neos, the world’s most efficient and quietest short/medium-haul jet | © Don-vip / Wikimedia Commons

According to the two airlines, sustainability is at the forefront of the merger, with the new airline hoping to achieve over 105 seat miles per gallon by 2025, trailing ahead of intercity rail for example, currently estimated in the US to be at 60 seat miles per gallon, according to the US Department of Energy.

Another blow for the ‘big four’ airlines

For the ‘big four’ of North America, United Airlines, Delta Air Lines, American Airlines and Southwest Airlines, the news will come as yet another blow to their recovery from the pandemic. Especially at a time where ageing fleets plus a historically expansive and inclusive services list continue to eat into profits.

Will low-fare air travel continue to boom in North America, as it has across the pond in Europe? Are you excited by the prospect? Let us know in the comments below.


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