Bus that replaced a Spirit flight to Cleveland broke down

At least one customer is demanding a refund
Posted at 5:23 PM, Dec 27, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-27 22:39:13-05

An Akron woman is demanding a refund from Spirit Airlines, after the ordeal she experienced trying to get home from Florida.

Spirit flight 440 from Fort Lauderdale to Cleveland was delayed several hours on Monday and then diverted to Detroit due to windy conditions that made it unsafe to land in Cleveland.

Then, passengers on the plane were told they’d be bussed to Cleveland instead of getting on another flight. A spirit spokesman confirmed those buses arrived three hours late.

A passenger, who did not want to publicize her name because of her employment, told News 5 her bus broke down near Toledo and she didn’t get home until close to 5:00 in the morning Tuesday. Originally, her flight was scheduled to land in Cleveland at 5:10 p.m on Monday.

“I would like a representative from Spirit to contact the passengers that were sitting on that bus on the side of the highway, elderly people, people with kids,” she said. "They wouldn’t give us any drinks, meals. They wouldn’t even give us a bottle of water.”

A Spirit spokesman said the bus was down for about 35 minutes due to a water hose failure and it arrived in Cleveland around 3:30 a.m. 

Spirit offered affected customers an apology via email and $50 vouchers per ticket for future travel. A spokesman said the airline was not required to offer anything because the delay and diversion was caused by the weather.

“It was a nice price,” she said, adding, “You pay for what you get.”


When purchasing tickets, airline customers agree to what the federal government calls a “Contract of Carriage.” Those contracts differ by carrier. While several major airlines will book customers on a competitor’s flight in the event of a cancellation, discount carriers like Spirit have no such agreements.

You can view Spirit’s Contract of Carriage here.