Sun Country Announces Expansion with Schedule Extention –

[ Routes ] By Daniel Morley
Sun Country Announces Expansion With Schedule Extension

Sun Country Airlines, based in Minneapolis, has announced a new route expansion. It will now offer service to seven additional cities. As the airline prepares to have a busy summer, the expansion comes at a time when the airline has extended its schedule into fall 2022. New routes and destinations will include the airline's first foray into Canada. The carrier will operate 100 routes to over 80 destinations in North America. Four seasonal routes will be returning next summer to complete the eleven-city expansion.

New Cities and Returning Routes

Sun Country's new routes will be operated from Minneapolis/St. Paul, the airline's primary hub and operational base. Paul. Asheville (NC), Milwaukee (New Orleans), and Savannah (GA) will be the returning cities to be added to the route map. Asheville will operate year-round, twice per week. On April 7, service to Savannah and New Orleans will resume. Service will be provided four times per week to New Orleans, and twice each week to Savannah. Milwaukee will return June 2, and will be operating twice weekly.

Sun Country's new route maps include Buffalo, Burlington and Charleston as well as Spokane, Pittsburgh, Spokane and Vancouver. All routes will operate twice weekly, either on Wednesday, Thursday or Friday and Sunday. Canada's first airline will operate the route to Vancouver. Depending on where the destination is, flights will start operating at the beginning of April and the beginning June.

Growth in the Face of Adversity

Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, Sun Country has seen its services grow steadily over the past year. Despite the decline in travel, this leisure-oriented airline has made use of its unique position to grow services. The Minnesota-based airline has always primarily served Minnesota's leisure travelers. The carrier is now offering leisure flights to warmer-weather destinations from other cities in the midwest.

The airline offers flights to Arizona and Florida from Milwaukee, Indianapolis and Green Bay. According to the airline's website, only 10 routes are operated annually. This is a heavy reliance on seasonal leisure routes. Sun Country was also buoyed when it won a contract from Amazon to operate Boeing 737s in freighter service to support its online marketplace delivery efforts. This contract has allowed the airline to continue flying even after demand plummeted in March 2020.

Despite its expansion, the airline remains true to its Minnesota roots. Sun Country had announced earlier this year a major overhaul to its inflight services offerings. This included a strong focus on local brands like Dotz Pretzels and Caribou Coffee. Inflight entertainment was also offered by the airline, with many of its offerings being shot in Minnesota.

Sun Country is poised to capitalize upon what is expected be a strong summer after the last two years of the pandemic.