Spirit Airlines lost $50M due to canceled flights

Spirit Airlines lost $50M due to canceled flights
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Spirit Airlines lost $50 million in revenue due to recent flight cancellations, the airline told investors Monday.

The budget airline canceled more than 2,800 flights between July 30 and Aug. 9, citing system outages, poor weather and staffing shortages. 

Spirit said that it will reduce its number of flights through September to prevent further unexpected cancellations. Those proactive cuts and reduced bookings due to the spread of COVID-19 will cost the airline an additional $80 million to $100 million in the third quarter of 2021, the firm told investors.

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“On behalf of our entire leadership team, we offer an apology to everyone impacted throughout the course of this event,” Spirit CEO Ted Christie said in a regulatory filing. “We believe the interruption was a singular event driven by an unprecedented confluence of factors and does not reflect systemic issues.”

The airline canceled more than 60 percent of its flights on certain days earlier this month, potentially leaving stranded thousands of passengers.

Air travel has rapidly rebounded in recent months, and most major airlines have struggled to keep up. Airlines delayed or canceled flights due to staffing shortages despite receiving $54 billion in federal aid to keep workers on the payroll, drawing scrutiny from Congress.

Earlier this month, amid Spirit’s cancellations, the Transportation Security Administration screened more than 2.2 million U.S. passengers, the highest figure since the start of the pandemic. 

Airline executives have warned that the surge in COVID-19 cases fueled by the delta variant has cut down on recent bookings, potentially imperiling the industry's recovery.