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‘Manchester Has Spirit!’ Airline Will Offer Flights At Manchester Airport

photo of Spirit plane taking off
Spirit Airlines

Spirit Airlines will operate flights to destinations in Florida from Manchester-Boston Regional Airport beginning in October, the company announced Wednesday.

The additional carrier comes as both business and leisure travel are regaining altitude following a pandemic that saw numerous routes put on pause due to low demand.

Spirit will operate direct flights daily to Ft. Lauderdale and Orlando beginning October 7, and in November, will also begin servicing Ft. Meyers and Tampa. 

The low-cost no-frills airline — distinguishable in the sky by its bright yellow planes — services more than 60 destinations globally, including major cities in Central and South America, as well as in the Caribbean.

“Manchester has spirit,” exclaimed Matt Klein, the airline’s executive vice president, during an announcement Wednesday. 

“There’s a lot of pent-up demand for travel right now, and the number of people who are turning to the air is growing, as more and more people become more confident with travelling again, in general,” Klein said. 

Spirit also operates flights out of Boston Logan International Airport and Bradley International in Hartford, Conn.  

Manchester-Boston Airport Director Ted Kitchens says the addition of Spirit is part of the travel hub’s long-term plan to “not only survive the pandemic, but to also thrive in a post-pandemic world.”

For Manchester-Boston, Spirit represents the first new airline since 2004. Passenger traffic at the airport has dwindled over the past 15 years. After moving 4.2 million passengers in 2005, just 1.7 million people flew through Manchester-Boston in 2019. The pandemic led to a further 60% reduction in traffic during 2020. 

Manchester-Boston currently offers routes from three other major airlines: American Airlines, Southwest and United. Destinations include both major Chicago-area airports, Washington D.C., Philadelphia, as well as Orlando and Tampa, Florida.

Todd started as a news correspondent with NHPR in 2009. He spent nearly a decade in the non-profit world, working with international development agencies and anti-poverty groups. He holds a master’s degree in public administration from Columbia University.
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