Discount carrier Spirit relaunches direct daily flight from Fort Lauderdale to Nicaragua

Chris O'Meara/AP

Ultra-low cost carrier Spirit Airlines is restarting its direct, daily flight from Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport to Managua, Nicaragua.

The direct flight will resume on Wednesday, Nov. 30. Spirit had shut down its flight to Managua in March 2020, when air travel came to a near standstill due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Spirit is the only airline that flies direct to Managua from the Fort Lauderdale airport. Avianca El Salvador and American Airlines both offer direct flights from Miami International Airport to the Nicaraguan capital, at much higher prices. Fares in December from MIA to Nicaragua surpassed $2,000 on American Airlines, while Spirit’s flight is $500 -$600 (but doesn’t include any carry-on or checked baggage).

From its Fort Lauderdale hub, Spirit has expanded its presence in Latin America and the Caribbean over the years with bargain basement air fares.

Spirit Airlines’ headquarters is in Miramar, near Fort Lauderdale in Broward County. Earlier this year, the airline was at the center of a bitter bidding war between Frontier Airlines and JetBlue Airways. Shareholders preferred JetBlue’s more lucrative offer, which means Spirit will be acquired by JetBlue if and when the deal passes the Justice Department’s regulatory approval process. Consumers would not feel the effects of the acquisition until the deal gets the green light, which can take up to two years.