Spirit Airlines may lay off or displace up to 60 percent of its flight attendants and as many as 45 percent of its pilots in two months, as it struggles to cope with soaring jet-fuel prices.
The Miramar-based low-cost carrier sent letters to union leaders Saturday, notifying them that it will furlough or displace up to 448 flight attendants and 242 pilots on Aug. 1, as the airline closes its New York LaGuardia and San Juan bases and reduces its Fort Lauderdale base. For flight attendants, the airline is also shutting its Detroit base
In 2002, Spirit Air CEO Ben Baldanza was a Senior Vice President at USAirways and became famous for publicly stating that the airline should fire its ‘unprofitable’ elite customers who don’t spend enough to buy their tickets (which USAirways willingly sells). He plugged along with this viewpoint and tone deafness at Spirit, becoming famous there for instructing customer service staff to give bupkus to complaining customers.
Looks like this approach served him well.