Spirit, Southwest Add Flight Destinations from MSP

Spirit Airlines will offer nonstop flights from the Twin Cities to Dallas, Fort Myers, Florida, and Fort Lauderdale, Florida, while Southwest Airlines plans to add flights to Kansas City, Missouri.

Two airlines have added flights from the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP)—giving Twin Cities travelers new options for reaching destinations in Texas, Florida, and Missouri.

Dallas-based Southwest Airlines said Monday that it will begin offering two daily, nonstop flights between MSP and Kansas City, Missouri, beginning February 14.

Southwest spokesman Chris Mainz said Wednesday that Southwest now offers nonstop flights from MSP to seven different destinations.

Meanwhile, Florida-based Spirit Airlines—the newcomer that debuted at MSP in May—said Monday that it is adding nonstop flights between the Twin Cities and the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport in Texas.

The airline will offer four weekly nonstop flights to Dallas beginning April 26, but it plans to offer daily service starting June 13.

A day after announcing its flights to Dallas, Spirit said Tuesday that it is adding two other destinations from MSP: Fort Myers and Fort Lauderdale, both in Florida. Spirit will offer nonstop, seasonal flights between MSP and those two cities from November 8 through April 24.

By adding Dallas and Fort Myers, Spirit has doubled the number of destinations it offers to Twin Cities fliers: The airline currently flies from MSP to Chicago and Las Vegas.

Spirit offers fares as low as about $29 but charges fees for many services that are available for free from other carriers; for example, the airline charges $20 for carry-on bags and will boost that price to $25 in November, according to its website.

Bob Herbst, founder of AirlineFinancials.com, told the Star Tribune that Spirit’s presence at MSP is unlikely to put much pressure on Delta Air Lines to lower fares, and smaller airlines like Southwest and Mendota Heights-based Sun Country Airlines are more likely to be affected by the new competition.