Issue Overview

That Frontier Spirit

That Frontier Spirit

February 14th, 2022 at 12:31 AM EST
16 min read

Issue Overview

One of the most popular airline-industry parlor games (yes, we've heard there are such things) is which two airlines would be the next dominoes to fall in U.S. airline consolidation. It's been a long parlor game; the last merger was the Alaska Airlines-Virgin America deal in 2016. Speculation has run rife, but Frontier-Spirit long has been a popular guess. The deal, in many ways, makes a lot of sense: Both airlines come from the Indigo Group's ultra-low-cost carrier (ULCC) incubator and share the same DNA; and their route networks and fleets are complementary. The real guessing game now is whether the Biden administration's Justice Department will approve the deal. Although the consensus opinion is that any deal involving the Big Four — American, Delta, Southwest, and United — would be dead on arrival, opinions are mixed about how the Justice Department will view a ULCC merger. Executives from the two ULCCs tout strong leisure demand and their ability to lower fares as reasons the deal should proceed.

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