MIAMI — Spirit Airlines will launch new service between Los Angeles and Oakland on November 12, 2015; this will make it the fifth airline to enter the L.A. and San Francisco Metropolitan area market.

Spirit will operate two daily nonstop flights–a morning and evening flight–in each direction. Flights to Oakland will depart LAX at 6:00 AM and 7:50 PM, and the flights to LAX will depart Oakland at 7:55 AM and 9:45 PM. The flights are blocked at about 1 hour and 15 minutes in each direction.

There is some good news for frequent fliers; Spirit will be operating a Airbus A319 between the two cities. This means that there will be 10 Big Front Seats instead of just four on its Airbus A320s. Though, the equipment is always subject to change.

One of the Busiest Air Travel Markets

The Ultra-Low-Cost-Carrier is about to enter one of the world’s busiest air travel markets. According to data by the U.S. DOT, there was an average of 20,423 passengers traveling between Los Angeles and the San Francisco Metropolitan area every day in 2014.

It is also worthwhile to note that the data also states that Southwest was the largest carrier in the market with holding about 63-65% of the market share throughout

2014 Quarter

Average Number of Passengers Per Day (L.A. to SFO Metropolitian Area)

Largest Carrier In Market

First Quarter


Southwest had 62% of the market share

Second Quarter


Southwest had 64% of the market share

Third Quarter


Southwest had 63% of the market share

Fourth Quarter


Southwest had 64% of the market share


American, Delta, Southwest, and United all operate several flights a day between LAX and San Francisco, and each airline puts up a strong fight.

Back in September 2013, Delta launched its Delta Shuttle service between the two cities, making  it the first ever west-coast shuttle service, and earlier this year, the airline announced that it would start flying the 717 on eight of its 15 daily flights next month.


Number of Daily Flights LAX-SFO On November 12



American and American Eagle


Mix of B737-800 and E175

Every other hour

Delta Air Lines and Delta Connection (Delta Shuttle service)


Mix of 717 and E175





About every other hour



A319 and A320



Delta Connection and Southwest currently operate between Los Angeles and Oakland with Spirit becoming the third airline to fly between the two cities this November.


Number of Daily Flights LAX-OAK On November 12



Delta Connection



Every other hour




About hourly




One morning and one evening flight

Spirit’s Fare War Could Help

Will Spirit be able to survive the tough competition? Time will tell, but Spirit will definitely put up a strong fight when it comes to air fares. As of now, the new flights are ranging from $53-$73 one way.

U.S. DOT data below shows the average one way fare between Los Angeles and the San Francisco Metropolitan Area market by quarter in 2014.

2014 Quarter Average One Way Fare
First Quarter $127.00
Second Quarter $137.00
Third Quarter $140.00
Fourth Quarter $140.00

The first one way fares Spirit is offering on the market are already half or more than half of the average one way fares on the market in 2014. While yes, Spirit is known for charging many fees from seat assignments in advanced to carry-ons to a glass of water, the average one-way price could still be lower on Spirit than other airlines.

Now, we ask: will the Spirit Effect help lower the average one way fares when we re-visit the data when it becomes available?

Beyond An Air Fare War

Beyond air fares, the airline has been busy growing at in both Los Angeles and Oakland. The airline has noted in the past that it helps the airline tremendously when people are familiar with how Spirit operates.

“Spirit is becoming an increasingly more popular travel choice for value conscious travelers in the West,” said Mark Kopczak, Spirit Airlines’ Vice President of Network Planning. “Spirit’s friendly service combined with our low Bare Fares™ with Frill Control™ makes flying between Los Angeles and the Bay area more affordable than ever.”

With this new service, Spirit will operate nonstop flights to 13 destinations from Los Angeles, including Atlanta (starting 8/20/15), Baltimore/Washington, DC (starting 7/9/15), Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas/Fort Worth, Denver, Detroit, Fort Lauderdale, Houston, Kansas City (starting 7/9/15), Las Vegas, Minneapolis-St. Paul, and Oakland/San Francisco Bay area (starting 11/12/15). From Oakland, Spirit will operate nonstop to five destinations, including Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston (seasonal), Las Vegas, and Los Angeles (starting 11/12/15).