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Spirit Adds Charleston to its Network with Three New Routes

South Carolina residents will be able to snap up affordable flights to Fort Lauderdale, Newark, and Philadelphia from next April

by Fergus Cole

December 23, 2022

Photo: Courtesy of Heisenberg / Unsplash

Ultra-low-cost carrier Spirit Airlines has announced it will be adding the city of Charleston to its network with three new routes next spring.

On Wednesday, December 14, the Florida-based airline announced it would introduce three new routes from Charleston International Airport (CHS) that will begin next year.

From April 5, the airline will begin services from CHS to three of the biggest urban areas on the east coast—Fort Lauderdale (FLL), Newark (EWR), and Philadelphia (PHL). All flights will be operated daily, with introductory fares starting at just $39 one way to Philadelphia and $49 one way to either Fort Lauderdale or Newark.

“We’re excited to connect the beautiful city of Charleston, South Carolina, with three of the biggest metro areas on the East Coast,” said John Kirby, Vice President of Network Planning at Spirit. “Spirit’s affordable fares and convenient, nonstop flights allow Guests to travel more often to visit friends and loved ones and explore Charleston’s attractions, coastline, and world-class restaurants.”

Photo: Courtesy of Forsaken Films / Unsplash

Spirit will be in direct competition with various other carriers on its three new routes. For example, JetBlue currently operates daily flights between Charleston and Fort Lauderdale, while Silver Airways also operates the route three times per week. Meanwhile, United Airlines now offers three daily flights between Charleston and Newark, and American Airlines flies twice daily between Charleston and Philadelphia.

The carrier will also face further competition from Delta, which runs multiple daily flights between Charleston and New York’s JFK and LaGuardia (LGA) airports. American also operates a twice-daily service between Charleston and Miami (MIA), which serves a similar area to Fort Lauderdale.

However, Spirit isn’t the only airline to enter the Charleston market in the last two years. Breeze Airways launched services there in May 2021, startup carrier Avelo began flying there in May 2022, and Sun Country Airlines will resume services between CHS and Minneapolis-St Paul (MSP) in April next year.

“We are grateful for Spirit’s commitment and investment in our community and the Charleston International Airport,” said Elliott Summey, executive director and CEO of Charleston International. “Spirit’s low fares and affordable flights provide more options for travelers to take a vacation here in Charleston, or for local residents to visit family and friends in three major cities any day of the week.”

Echoing Summey’s comments, Helen Hill, CEO of Explore Charleston and Chair of the Aviation Authority, added that the new partnership with Spirit “is a major achievement for our community and further illustrates the strength and desirability of the Charleston region. The Northeast and Florida have consistently been top areas of origin for visitors to the Lowcountry.”

“Additional daily options for Philadelphia, Fort Lauderdale, and New York area residents to conveniently enjoy our region’s unparalleled attributes increase our travel industry’s competitiveness and economic impact.”