“The Spring Break season lasts for a number of weeks, and customers are always looking for great deals to warm weather getaways,” said Daniel Shurz, Frontier’s senior vice president – commercial. “With this new service, even more travelers will get to experience Low Fares Done Right to many popular Spring Break destinations in Sunny Florida or the Historic Northeast.”
As part of its announcement, Frontier said it plans to offer more than 50 daily departures this spring from throughout the United States to eight Florida destinations including Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Miami, Orlando, Punta Gorda, Tampa and West Palm Beach.
Until Wednesday, several airlines had received approval to fly to Cuban cities not including Havana. The JetBlue flight that took off from Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport on Wednesday morning was heading to Santa Clara, about three hours from Havana.
Now JetBlue, along with seven other carriers, have the final OK from the U.S. government to seek approval from Cuba to finalize flight schedules and destinations.
Here is the full list of airlines, along with their proposed routes and frequency:
• Alaska Airlines — Los Angeles, once daily
• American Airlines — Miami, four times a day; Charlotte, once daily
• Delta Air Lines — New York (JFK), once daily; Atlanta, once daily; Miami, once daily
• Frontier Airlines — Miami, once daily
• JetBlue Airways — Fort Lauderdale, twice daily (except once on Saturdays); New York (JFK), once daily; Orlando, once daily
• Southwest Airlines — Fort Lauderdale, twice daily; Tampa, once daily
• Spirit Airlines — Fort Lauderdale, twice daily
• United Airlines — Newark, once daily; Houston, once weekly (Saturdays)
The decision by the Department of Transportation places Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport as one of the top airports serving Cuba, with about 40 flights daily just to Havana.
Marking the departure of JetBlue’s first commercial flight to Cuba on Wednesday, Fort Lauderdale airport CEO and Director Mark Gale said the number of flights to Cuba out of the airport is a “testament to the reputation of Fort Lauderdale.”
Stacy Ritter, president of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau, called Wednesday’s flight to Cuba “a milestone.”
“To be the first in something so historic is truly astounding,” she said.