Spirit Airlines moves into day three of cancelled flights, disruptions
MIRAMAR, Florida - Spirit Airlines, one of the United States' most popular low-cost airline carriers, is moving into day three of a rough patch.
We are experiencing operational challenges in some areas of our network. Before going to the airport, check your email and current flight status here: https://t.co/yuPJDPxeNu. The fastest way to receive assistance is to visit our webchat: https://t.co/QnlZcUCMtk. pic.twitter.com/E176h8KHjN— Spirit Airlines (@SpiritAirlines) August 2, 2021
The Florida-based company says a combination of weather upsets, system outages, and staffing shortages led leaders to approve the cancellation of hundreds of flights.
According to FlightAware, Spirit canceled at least 298 flights Tuesday, which is more than one-third of the airline's scheduled flights for that day.
The same website indicated that the company canceled a total of 334 flights Monday, which was about 42% of the day's schedule.
Sunday saw a whopping 60% of the airline's schedule canceled or delayed, FlightAware said.
A series of thunderstorms that caused multiple delays evolved into what would become the 'perfect storm' for Spirit.
The delays would have required a number of the airline's workers to put in so much overtime that their hours would exceed what is legally allowed under federal safety rules.
According to CNN, Spirit's airline's schedulers decided to use Monday to brainstorm and quickly implement a way to reset the system; the airline says it is "working around the clock" to get back on track.
Interestingly, Spirit's troubles appeared just as increasing numbers of people -braver after being fully vaccinated and eager to spend their summers away from home- began heading back to airports after a drop-off in demand last year.
In fact, according to CNN, Sunday was the busiest day at the nation's airports since the pandemic cratered air travel, according to a Transportation Security Administration tally of checkpoint screenings.
After cancelling hundreds of flights on one of the busiest days for the industry, it's likely Spirit has a lot of catching up to do, both in appeasing disgruntled customers and in making up for losses.
But Spirit isn't the only airline to experience a struggle like this.
According to Flight Global, earlier this year, Delta Air Lines, Southwest Airlines and American Airlines canceled hundreds of flights for a number of reasons that included weather, technical glitches, and staffing issues.
Still, Spirit's leaders face a number of hurdles as they work to get the airline back on its feet.
During last week’s second-quarter earnings call, Spirit executives admitted that their business remains “challenging.” The company posted a $288 million loss for the three months that ended on 30 June.
But they remained positive in their outlook, adding that ”the stage is set” for sustained profitability.