Spirit plans next phase of Dallas expansion

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Low-cost carrier Spirit Airlines is continuing a network expansion from Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, announcing today that it will launch flights to five new destinations and taking the total number of non-stop destinations it serves from the airport to 25.

The carrier has also filed with the US Department of Transportation (DOT) to begin non-stop flights to Los Cabos in Mexico from Dallas-Fort Worth and San Diego.

The five new destinations are: Fort Myers, New Orleans, Minneapolis-St Paul, Philadelphia and Latrobe. Spirit will launch thrice weekly flights to Fort Myers from 8 November, daily service to New Orleans from 24 January 2013, four-times weekly service each to Minneapolis-St Paul and Philadelphia on 26 April 2013, and thrice-weekly service to Latrobe on 14 June 2013.

Spirit will add a second daily flight to New Orleans from 13 June 2013, and up the flight frequencies to daily on both the Minneapolis-St Paul and Philadelphia routes on the same day.

Fort Lauderdale-based Spirit only started operations to Dallas-Fort Worth in May 2011 but has quickly added new destinations over the past year. The airline began flights to Toluca airport, Mexico City's secondary airport, as well as Detroit, Portland and San Diego in June 2012. A month earlier in May 2012, it began flights to Denver, Myrtle Beach and Tampa.

Spirit will be the only airline operating between Dallas and Latrobe, which is near Pittsburgh, but it faces competition on the other new routes.

On the Dallas-Fort Worth to Fort Myers route, Spirit will compete against American Airlines, which offers non-stop service, schedules in Innovata show. American also flies non-stop between the airport and New Orleans, while Southwest Airlines operates non-stop between nearby Dallas Love Field and New Orleans.

Spirit will compete with American, Delta Air Lines and Sun Country Airlines on the flights to Minneapolis-St Paul, while Southwest offers one-stop service between Love Field and Minneapolis.

Between Dallas-Fort Worth and Philadelphia, Spirit will compete against American and US Airways. Southwest operates one-stop service between Love Field and Philadelphia.

Separately, Spirit has filed a request with the US DOT to operate daily between San Diego and Los Cabos from 8 November, and four times weekly between Dallas-Fort Worth and Los Cabos from 13 June 2013, with the ability to increase this to a daily service.

American currently operates non-stop between Dallas-Fort Worth and Los Cabos, while Alaska Airlines offers non-stop service between San Diego and Los Cabos.