Spirit Airlines Cancels Flights to Costa Rica Due to Strike
In response to a pilot's strike, Spirit Airlines has cancelled all of its flights to Costa Rica through Tuesday, June 15. News Update: now extending through Thursday June 17.
Spirit pilots stopped work on Saturday, June 12 as part of an ongoing contract dispute with the airline that has lasted for more than three years.
According to a note posted on its web page, the discount airline is offering affected passengers credit for a future flight on the airline for the full amount of the unused ticket plus an additional credit of $100 for use on future travel, or a full refund for tickets purchased.
In a press release, Spirit Air said that the pilot's union turned down an offer of a 29% pay increase over five years as well as other benefits. In the release, Spirit Airlines President and CEO Ben Baldanza said “I am concerned that our employees are being used in a broader political game that may not be in the interest of their careers or their families.”
According to The Associated Press, Spirit pilots said their pay lags behind that of pilots of other discount airlines such as AirTran Airways and JetBlue. On Sunday, the news service quoted Paul Hopkins, strike committee chairman of Spirit's unit of The Air Line Pilots Association, as saying that "None of the planes are moving and none of our pilots have crossed the picket line."
In addition to San Jose, Costa Rica, the Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based airline serves Panama, Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala.