Travel notes: Avelo schedule extended, Spirit flying to Charleston, busy skies over holiday period and free WiFi

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Avelo Airlines‘ schedule from Wilmington Airport to five Florida destinations have been extended to June 19th.

The first flights are slated for Feb. 1.

Flights are twice weekly to Fort Myers, Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, and Tampa.

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The exception is Orlando, which will see three-time-a-week nonstop service. In May and June, the frequency increases to four times weekly, above the three times a week Frontier Airlines offered to Orlando in late spring in its half-hearted relaunch from Wilmington that ended last year.

Frontier had grown into the second-largest airline operating out of Philadelphia International Airport and it made little sense to compete against its own flights to Orlando.

Avelo has been busier on the promotional front than Frontier, with discounts through downstate chambers of commerce and a ticket drawing on the Wilmington Airport Facebook site.

There are still $49 one-way tickets on Avelo, based on a look at its website. When you add in seat assignments and checked luggage, the cost of a roundtrip can end up around $200, not a bad price for a trip to Sunshine State.

Spirit headed to Charleston

Spirit Airlines will offer nonstop flights to Charleston, SC. from Philadelphia International Airport as well as Newark, NJ and Fort Lauderdale.

Service will get underway in April 2023.

The historic city has become a leading tourist destination.

American Airlines has two non-stops a day from Philadelphia via smaller regional jets, and Southwest has daily nonstop from Baltimore-Washington.

Spirit and Jet Blue have agreed to merge after Frontier Airlines decided not to get into a bidding war for Spirit.

Free WiFi on Delta Airlines

Delta Airlines is poised offer free WiFi service to most of its passengers. The Wall Street Journal reported the plan that would come if the carrier is satisfied that jets have sufficient bandwidth to handle the added traffic.

WiFi quality has been a problem for airlines as more business and leisure travelers demand access.

Other airlines offer WiFi service with varied charges. American Airlines charges $19 for the length of the flight, with lesser charges for short hops. Barebones carrier Frontier does not offer WiFi service. Jet Blue, which has a controversial alliance with American, charges nothing.

Back to the skies over holiday

Finally, AAA estimates that holiday air travel will see a 14% increase over last year, with nearly 7.2 million Americans expected to fly. Flights and airports will be packed this holiday season.

Demand for flights has surged despite higher airline ticket prices. AAA expects the number of people taking holiday flights this year will come close to matching 2019 when 7.3 million Americans traveled by air.

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