April 24 2014 | Latest NewsBy Katherine Sayre, NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune
Spirit Airlines will offer daily flights from Louis Armstrong International Airport to Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and Houston's George Bush Intercontinental Airport beginning Aug. 1, the company said Thursday.
The expanded service will begin 1 1/2 years after Spirit Airlines first moved into the New Orleans market. The company launched flights to Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport in January 2013.
The company said through the direct flights, Spirit will also offer connections to several cities in Central America: San Pedro Sula, Honduras; Managua, Nicaragua; Panama City, Panama; and San Jose, Costa Rica, among other connections in the U.S. and worldwide.
"We are very excited about the newly expanded routes by Spirit at Armstrong International," Iftikhar Ahmad, aviation director, said in a news release. "The daily flights to Houston and Ft. Lauderdale will give our passengers another option for travel to these fine cities. More importantly, the timing of the departure schedule from New Orleans to Ft. Lauderdale will open up opportunities for travel to Central America on their connecting flights from Florida."
Company officials didn't discuss ticket prices. But tickets being offered on Spirit's website Thursday for flights in August ranged from about $30 to $150 each way.
The outbound Ft. Lauderdale flight will depart at 7:58 p.m. The inbound flight from Fort Lauderdale departs at 8:30 a.m. and arrives in New Orleans at 9:32 a.m.
For Houston, the outbound flight leaves at 10:12 a.m.; the inbound leaves at 6:03 p.m. and arrives at 7:18 p.m.
Spirit Airlines will face competition with the routes. United Airlines offers flights to George Bush Intercontinental. Southwest Airlines offers flights to Fort Lauderdale.
In February, Alaska Airlines announced it was adding the first direct flight from New Orleans to Seattle.