Spirit Lost $50 Million on Cancellation Fiasco

A near two-week stretch in which Spirit Airlines was forced to cancel nearly 2,800 flights has cost the low-budget carrier dearly.

The airline said Monday it lost almost $50 million in revenue and the fiasco – a result of staffing shortages, the inability to move crew and equipment around, and bad weather – is also hurting future bookings, which are in a decline for the entire industry as travelers grapple with canceling trips due to the COVID-19 delta variant.

Spirit said that it will also reduce flights for the rest of the quarter, which ends Sept. 30, according to ABC News .

With all the cancellations, and now fewer flights for the next six weeks, Spirit estimated that its third-quarter revenue will range between $885 million and $955 million, or 4 percent to 11 percent below the same quarter in pre-pandemic 2019.

Spirit also had some unexpected expenses aside from just canceling so many flights from July 30 to August 11. The airline said it paid to put some stranded passengers on flights operated by other airlines and covered their hotel stays. It also incurred higher labor costs, such as overtime.

Spirit forecast that its third-quarter operating expenses will be slightly above $1 billion — an increase of up to 20% over the third quarter of 2019.

The Miramar, Florida-based airline made the disclosures in a regulatory filing after the stock market closed Monday.

Spirit Lost $50 Million on Cancellation Fiasco

Hongxia Sun