In recent years legacy airlines have struggled, while low-cost carriers have achieved success. The original low-cost operating model, created by Southwest Airlines, has been adapted by airlines worldwide. Previous studies argue that the more a company adheres to the original model, the more successful the airline will be. Little academic study of the current state of the low-cost model exists. The researcher seeks to address this gap through qualitative methods and a case study involving Spirit Airlines. Spirit is currently one of the most successful low-cost carriers operating in the United States. The operating strategies of Spirit Airlines are analyzed to determine the extent to which the company follows the original low-cost operating model.


low-cost airline, low-cost model, ancillary revenue, Spirit Airlines

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