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Spirit (SAVE) to Expand by Adding New Flights to Colombia

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In a bid to broaden its network, Spirit Airlines (SAVE recently announced its decision to start operating flights to two Colombian cities — Bucaramanga and Barranquilla — from April 2020. Non-stop flights connecting Fort Lauderdale and Bucaramanga will take to the skies from Apr 22, 2020 and operate thrice a week (Monday, Wednesday and Friday).  Flights connecting Fort Lauderdale and Barranquilla will commence operations a day later, flying on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays.

Notably, Spirit Airlines is no stranger to Colombia. The carrier operated its first flight to Colombia in May 2008, connecting Fort Lauderdale to Cartagena. Subsequently, it added flights to Bogota, Medellin, Armenia and Cali. Additionally, Spirit Airlines operates non-stop flights connecting Orlando and Cartagena, Bogota and Medellin. In the event of flights to Bucaramangaand Barranquilla materializing, which is subject to government approval, Spirit Airlines will serve more Colombian cities from the United States than any other carrier.

Spirit Airlines’ decision to expand its presence in Colombia seems prudent, as the city is one of the most attractive tourist spots. This low-cost carrier is being aided by robust passenger revenues on the back of strong air-travel demand. Passenger revenues, accounting for bulk of the top line, increased 26.7% in 2018. Continuing with this trend, the same increased 16.3%, year over year, in the first nine months of 2019. The additional flights to and from the two new destinations in Colombia is likely to bump up the carrier’s passenger revenues further.

Zacks Rank & Key Picks

Spirit Airlines carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks in the same space are Deutsche Lufthansa DLAKY, Delta Air Lines DAL and SkyWest (SKYW - Free Report) . While Deutsche Lufthansasports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Delta and SkyWest carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy), at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Shares of Deutsche Lufthansa, Delta and SkyWest have rallied more than 9%, 11% and 16%, respectively, over the past three months.

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