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June 10, 2021

In the summer of 1996, Spirit Airlines began offering flights to and from Detroit and Philadelphia from Myrtle Beach International Airport (MYR). The airline added New York City, Boston and Atlantic City in 1997. Twenty-five years later, Spirit carries 40 percent of the travelers who use MYR and with that, provides the majority of flights available. Spirit Airlines President and CEO Ted Christie and members of his team gathered at MYR for a celebration marking 25 years of service at the airport June 9.

Not only is Spirit the airport’s largest carrier, it’s also offering more bright yellow planes to our coastal skies in order to meet the growing demand of the Grand Strand, according to Christie, who revealed that Spirit’s summer schedule will now offer nearly 200 flights each week with nonstop service to 19 destinations. 

This service represents a 40 percent increase in flights compared to the carrier’s 2019 levels.

“This is more than a rebound,” Christie said. “This is solid growth compared to where we were two years ago in Myrtle Beach, and we have the area’s residents and loyal visitors to thank for that.”

Christie was joined by airport and community leaders during the celebration.

“The Grand Strand is one of the most popular tourism destinations in America and Spirit has been there all along this journey with us as an invaluable partner,” said Karen Riordan, president and CEO of Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce. “The destinations that Spirit is serving is some of our most vital feeder markets for tourism, but not just for the vacationer but for our family reunions, our conferences, our groups and our businesses. Something that we are proud of at Visit Myrtle Beach is that we are an affordable, family beach destination. We always have been and we always will be. We want to provide great value to the people that are coming here and Spirit enables that.”

“Spirit Airlines has been a loyal partner to the airport and local community for the past 25 years and we’re thankful for the abundant air service opportunities they provide to our passengers,” said Scott Van Moppes, MYR Director of Airports. “As MYR’s principal carrier, travelers can look forward to nonstop service to their 19 different destinations, an incredible offering for a small-hub airport. We look forward to our continued partnership with our friends at Spirit Airlines and congratulate them on 25 years of success in Myrtle Beach.”

“I remember when this was the jetport and you could hardly get a flight out of here,” said Horry County Council Chairman Johnny Gardner. Spirit took a chance and came into partner with Horry County and Myrtle Beach, and now look where we are today. Myrtle Beach and Horry County is a destination where people come for vacation, but it’s also a place where people live. We have more and more people moving here; we have about 1,000 people moving here each month. We’re building new homes and we’re making quality of life better here in Horry County. People can go back home on a routine basis because of Spirit Airlines.”

“The City of Myrtle Beach and the Myrtle Beach area is the second fastest growing MSA (Metropolitan Statistical Area) in the country and it’s predicted to be that way for the next seven to 10 years and possibly moving forward,” said City of Myrtle Beach Council Member John Krajc. “We need partners like Spirit Airlines who have that vision of growth, who have that vision of dedication and customer service so we can grow together not just as partners but as family.”

Spirit continues to seize growth opportunities as demand for air travel increases. This year, 16 new fuel-efficient Airbus A320neo planes will join the airline’s Fit Fleet™, which is among the youngest in the industry. Next year, Spirit plans to accept another 21 new planes.

Spirit is one of only three U.S. airlines listed on FORTUNE’s 2021 list of World’s Most Admired Companies. WalletHub recently named Spirit “Most Affordable Airline” in their 2021 Best Airlines awards and ranked Spirit third out of 11 in the overall rankings.

MYR is owned by Horry County and operated by the Department of Airports. MYR is served by Allegiant, American, Delta, Frontier, Porter, Southwest, Spirit, Sun Country and United. Learn more at flymyrtlebeach.com

Flights from MYR now include:

Akron/Canton, Ohio (CAK) 3x Weekly
Atlantic City (ACY) Up to 2x Per Day
Fort Lauderdale (FLL) 2x Daily
Baltimore (BWI) 2x Daily
Hartford, CT (BDL) Up to 3x Per Day
Boston (BOS) Up to 3x Per Day
Kansas City (MCI) 3x Weekly
Latrobe, PA (LBE) 2x Daily
Charleston, W.Va. (CRW) 2x Weekly
New York LaGuardia (LGA) 2x Daily
Chicago (ORD) 2x Daily
Newark, NJ (EWR) 2x Daily
Cleveland (CLE) 2x Daily
Orlando (MCO) 3x Weekly
Columbus (CMH) 3x Weekly
Philadelphia (PHL) Daily
Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW) 3x Weekly
Pittsburgh (PIT) Up to 2x Per Day
Detroit (DTW) 2x Daily

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