January 31, 2012

New Regulation Costs Consumers Millions Each Year

24-Hour Hold Rule "Consumer Friendly" but Comes at a Cost All Must Bear

MIRAMAR, Fla., Jan. 31, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The U.S. Department of Transportation's new supposedly "consumer friendly" regulation requiring airlines to hold fares for 24 hours after booking without penalty comes with unintended consequences and is costing consumers millions.

To cover the costs of this misguided and expensive regulation, Spirit (Nasdaq:SAVE) is introducing the $2 DOTUC fee. The $2 fee to cover the unintended consequences of government regulations goes into effect on Tuesday, January 31, 2012.

While this may appear to be a consumer-friendly rule at first, the USDOT has ignored the cost impact to consumers. As the transparency leader, Spirit believes that consumers have a right to know that this misguided regulation is expensive and is hitting consumers directly in their pocket books. Spirit believes low fares are what help consumers most.

"People love the idea of not having to commit to a reservation, but this regulation, like most, imposes costs on consumers," says Spirit President and CEO Ben Baldanza. "Wouldn't we all like to eat all we want and not get fat? Regulators like to try to sell the idea of this rule, but have ignored the cost impact to consumers. You simply can't eat all you want without consequences."

This rule mandates that we take out seat inventory for those who may or may not decide to pay for it. This prevents us from selling these seats to someone who definitively wants to book their reservation and leads to seats not being filled. The consequence is that we must spread costs over fewer customers, thus raising the cost for all passengers.

This 'tax' on consumers ripples through all aspects of the economy and costs Americans jobs. Spirit is urging Americans to take action and hold our elected officials and their appointees accountable to their promise to reduce regulations.

As a reminder, last year Spirit walked the walk while most other airlines gouged their consumers when Congress failed to reauthorize the FAA's funding. During this FAA shutdown airlines could not collect federal taxes. Spirit passed along all of the tax rollback savings to its customers while nearly all other carriers pocketed the difference in taxes in the form of higher fares.

About Spirit Airlines

Spirit Airlines (Nasdaq:SAVE) empowers customers to save money on air travel by offering ultra low base fares with a range of optional services for a fee, allowing customers the freedom to choose only the extras they value. This innovative approach grows the traveling market and stimulates new economic activity while creating new jobs. Spirit's modern fleet, configuration and other innovations enable Spirit to burn less fuel per seat than competitors, making Spirit one of the most environmentally-friendly U.S. carriers. Spirit's all-Airbus fleet currently operates more than 175 daily flights to over 45 destinations throughout the U.S., Latin America and Caribbean. Visit Spirit at www.spirit.com.

The Spirit Airlines logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=9737

MEDIA NOTE: Spirit aircraft photos and video b-roll are available in the press room section of spirit.com at http://www.spirit.com/Pressrelease.aspx.

CONTACT: Media Contacts:

         Misty Pinson

         Director, Corporate Communications

         misty.pinson@spirit.com

         954-628-4827/cell 954-918-9432

         

         Manuel Jaquez

         Senior Manager Commercial - Latin America

         manuel.jaquez@spirit.com

         954-628-4898


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