Contract disputes have left the very popular Spirit Airlines planes on the ground for several days since pilots walked off the job last Saturday. The airline offered full refunds to customers for missed flights and in some cases even offered a bonus in addition to the refund to be used on future flights to remain in the good graces of their loyal customer base.
Spirit has had a major taste of success in recent years and certainly doesn’t want to go back to the days where they were struggling to make ends meet financially. Over the course of the last few years, Spirit has become one of the most popular airlines in Florida, but this lapse in service may do plenty of harm if it isn’t handled properly.
Many customers of the aviation industry need accurate and quality service from the airline they fly with. Critical appointments and connecting flights can’t be missed and cancellations can in some case be unforgivable – aviation is a service industry and in order to be successful, that service must be as close to perfect as possible.
If all of the cylinders of an aviation operation aren’t firing at the same time, it can spell disaster for even the most popular airline. Pilots, air crew, ground crew and equipment all need to be fully functional and reliable in order to build or maintain the necessary reputation. Failure on any level, aside from an uncontrollable act of God, will draw criticism that can hurt business – that goes for labor disputes, mechanical problems or equipment failure.
If Spirit hopes to save and maintain the level of success that they’ve worked so hard for these last few years since setting up shop in Miramar a little over a decade ago, they need to resolve this contract issue as quickly as possible and resume their normal flight schedule. A successful airline needs a quick acting and courteous crew; a clean and properly maintained fleet of aircraft and safe, reliable and easy to use aircraft tugs to get the planes on the runways for on time take offs – trying to function with anything less than that is impossible.