Frontier and Allegiant sharply cut back midweek flying

Two of the three primary U.S. ultralow-cost carriers have sharply reduced their Tuesday and Wednesday flights, responding to the changing habits of U.S. flyers. 

Frontier Airlines, which in May said it planned to draw down service on Tuesday and Wednesday by approximately 20% during the second half of the year, said it made the move because hybrid work opportunities have altered leisure demand patterns.

“While overall leisure travel is increasing, the benefit is disproportionately landing on peak days and in peak travel periods,” Daniel Shurz, the carrier’s senior vice president of commercial, said about the reduction. 

Allegiant has quietly made even more drastic cuts to its Tuesday and Wednesday flying. The Las Vegas-based discount carrier has historically flexed its schedule up and down according to the time of year and day of week far more aggressively than other U.S. carriers. Even so, its move away from the midweek is noteworthy. 

In the first week of June 2019, Allegiant flew 7.2% of its operations on Tuesday and 13.6% of its operations on Wednesday, according to an analysis of Milanamos airline industry data by the consulting firm Hospitio. That same week this year, Allegiant flew just 1.9% of its weekly schedule on Tuesday. On Wednesday of that week, Allegiant flew 7.8% of its schedule. 

Frontier and Allegiant sharply cut back midweek flying

The carrier will continue that trend into the fall, with plans to fly just 2.2% of its operations during the second of week of September on Tuesday, Cirium data shows. 

In an email, Allegiant spokesman Hector Mejia said the airline reduced its midweek flying as a way to shore up operations during the busy summer flying season. 

“Making these slight network reductions allows us to allocate our resources where they’re most needed, ultimately helping us enhance our reliability and better serve our customers,” he said.

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