Spirit Airlines Operates Domestic Flights Departing At 3AM?!

Filed Under: Spirit

Yesterday I wrote about what I consider to be the worst timed domestic westbound redeye. Specifically I was talking about Alaska’s seasonal Chicago to Anchorage flight, which departs at 12:55AM and arrives at 4:35AM, and is blocked at 6hr40min.

What I perhaps didn’t explain well is that I struggle to sleep without a bed. That’s not specific to planes, but life in general. I’m not the person who can fall asleep in a car, or on a couch, or anywhere else — and I’m jealous of those of you who can!

Ford and I are the opposite in that regard — he can fall asleep anywhere, but can’t stay asleep, even if conditions are good. I can only fall asleep in a bed, but once I’m asleep I don’t wake up for a long time.

I asked you guys if you knew of any worse flights, and boy did you guys have some flights that are significantly worse.

Perhaps something comparable to the Alaska flight is Hawaiian Airlines’ one “reverse redeye” from the mainland to Hawaii — specifically from Las Vegas to Honolulu, departing at 1:50AM and arriving at 5:00AM. Arguably that’s actually not that bad of a flight, and in first class I’d actually say it’s a good flight, since they have flat beds.

However, a couple of readers pointed to flights that most definitely are worse than any of these, and I can’t believe I didn’t know these existed.

Spirit Airlines operates some flights up and down the East Coast in the middle of the night.

For example, they operate a flight from Fort Lauderdale to Niagara Falls, departing at 10:30PM and arriving at 1:33AM. That’s a late night flight, eh?

But that’s not the crazy part. What’s crazy is that they operate a return flight, departing Niagara Falls at 2:35AM and arriving in Fort Lauderdale at 5:28AM.

That’s a three hour flight in the same timezone that’s no doubt going to leave you miserable, no matter where you’re originating.

That flight isn’t even a one-off! There’s a similarly timed flight from Plattsburgh to Fort Lauderdale. It’s even a bit later, departing at 2:52AM and landing at 6:09AM.

Add in the fact that this is Spirit, and boy do these flights look like an… adventure?

Bottom line

I know some people are probably saying “what’s the big deal?” Well, I’m also an airline schedule geek, and I used to think I at least knew of all of the unusually timed flights in the US. While 3AM flights are the norm in the Middle East (given that most people are connecting), they’re extremely rare within the US.

I guess this is one way to get great aircraft utilization without changing timezones. You’d think no one would book these, but I’m sure Spirit wouldn’t be operating these flights if they weren’t full. That further reinforces the concept that people will endure just about anything for a low fare.

So… can anyone top that? 😉

  1. one of my best friends took the inaugural Niagara Falls – FLL flight when it first started. I think it was something like 39$ round trip. I amazed that schedule is running almost 10 years later.

    I had to leave Miami at 330 in the morning to get him. Even for kids in our 20’s, it was a bad idea. Plus, Niagara Falls is the Air Force reserve base and barely has anything going on!

  2. Not US but it’s not good.

    RGL-AEP departs 3:15am arrives 6:15am

    The RGL airport has no daytime departures. All after midnight. Got stuck there once … they do sell beer.

  3. Frontier has a LAX to DEN flight that departs at 12:53am and arrives at 4:20am. I hear that it is always full. Have a few friends that use it often. Party late in LA and still back early for work.

  4. Qatar Airways used to have a flight to Dubai departing at 3:30. And that flight was less than an hour.

  5. In 2018, Spirit announced that would begin installing WiFi on their aircraft – and said the project would be completed by November 2019. I can’t seem to find the statistics on how many/which aircraft have WiFi installed, or what routes it’s operating on. Could you help with that?

  6. @ Paul — Right, that’s totally normal in the Gulf, since their entire route networks are based around connections. 3AM is rush hour in the region.

  7. Oh Ben, sorry I didn’t catch the original.. but just try to fly out of Aguadilla, PR. I sometimes wonder if the airport is actually open during daylight hours. 🙂

  8. I was flying Pune to Chennai last week and took a 2am Spicejet flight that was due to arrive 3:40am. We were delayed by 45 minutes, so left about 245am and arrived about 430am. And that’s primarily an O&D flight, not connecting! My seat also had the least legroom of any 737 I’ve ever experienced. Not fun!

  9. Back when 9W existed, there used to be many domestic red-eyes within India. I remember several years back we were doing the usual overnight transit in BOM and there were numerous 2 AM departures to DEL, AMD, BLR etc, all of which are ~2 hour flights at most. May not be the case anymore, I’m too lazy to check.

  10. Alaska offers multiple 3-hour red-eyes between Seattle and Anchorage, including 3 AM arrivals at both airports. I recognize that these flights are timed for connections to/from Alaska’s transcon routes out of Seattle but I’m sure plenty of people book them simply because they are the cheapest option. Ugh.

  11. +1 to @Stu. Every time I go to India in the summer time, I use Air India domestically and many of them are some ridiculous 3am departure 4/5am arrival and sometimes that’s the only flight that gets you between two cities efficiently….

  12. Jetblue operates a similar flight. Leaves BDL at 9:34 PM to SJU, arriving 1:22AM. Turns around leaving SJU at 2:35AM arriving BDL at 6:31AM.

  13. Emirates has a flight that leaves DXB for IAD at 0230 and arrives at around 0830. United has flights that leave for Australia from LAX at 2200. This is whining.

  14. @ Rain17 — Read my post more carefully. 😉 I made it clear that this is very common in other parts of the world. And a 10PM flight is different than a 3AM flight. I’m not whining, I’m genuinely fascinated by these flights, because I didn’t realize they existed.

  15. As @Andrew pointed out, F9 has a lot of flights in the middle of the night. I’ve used the flight referenced from LAX-DEN after an event in LA on a Saturday night to get home in the early hours and avoid a hotel cost. I was in bed by 5am. The risk as I learned on a similar flight from LAS-DEN a few months ago is if you get a delay! Our 1:10am flight was delayed by 3 hours due to weather impacting the inbound aircraft. At 4:00am the plane arrived and F9 announced that the crew had timed out and it would take until 08:30am to get a replacement crew. Thus an easy hop that would have had me in bed by 5am suddenly had me in bed at 1pm. F9 could have foreseen the timeout and replacement crew issue and announced the 7.5 hour delay at 11:30pm when they announced the 3 hour delay. Instead it was too late to get a hotel room and was a scenario I’d never want to face again.

  16. @tim AF218 was diverted to Isfahan due to issues with the ventilation system.

    Not pleasant, although am sure everyone will be looked after very well.

    Politics aside , Iranians are very hospitable people and no doubt will want to make sure they are ok and that they are on the way safely

  17. I too am amazed that the Niagara Falls flight keeps running. The price isnt even that great, and YYZ/BUF are competitive enough to avoid this.

    The airport is much closer to the border, but there is absolutely nothing of interest around it.

  18. I recently flew on a Frontier flight to ISP. We landed around 9:30PM, and the flight attendant had told us that they had a 10:30 departure from ISP to TPA. He said there were 18 people on the flight, and sure enough, there were about 20 people waiting for the plane.

    JetBlue also has a flight from San Juan to JFK that leave at 2:26AM, and also a flight that leaves at 11:30PM but gets in at 3:23AM. And a pretty similarly timed flight from JFK to SJU.

  19. That´s true what a reader said before about early departures in Argentina deep south (patagonia).

    Because of the distance and no change in time (same as Buenos Aires) flight depart at crazy times like 3 am.. RGL, USH, CRD, etc

  20. it seems like horrible flight times are the norm in Africa, the Middle East and South Asia. And I tend to disagree with Lucky in that I think there’s more to it than connections. If it were just that, then you’d see it as busy during the daylight hours and no, it’s quieter. Tons of point to point flights leave at like 1 or 2 am only to arrive at like 4 am. Seems horrible to me, especially since I can’t sleep in a recliner either.

  21. It’s the same in Asia, look at KUL for instance and the AirAsia schedule.

    I once flew From Manila to Kuala Lumpur to Phuket on AirAsia, departing at 1 AM and arriving at 7 AM, with both flights being only a few hours. I will never let that friend book our flights again. He just wanted to save the cost of a hotel night…

  22. Flights departing LAS at that hour (maybe) make sense? Since it’s a place I think people tend to stay up late anyway… A number of the European leisure carriers have late night (post-midnight) departures from party destinations like IBZ back to the UK.

  23. @Lucky,

    Does this potentially have to do with a lack of airspace flying the east coast corridor? Like, if this flight left at 5:00pm, would they have to divert over the Atlantic to avoid ATL, IAD, NYC, ORD, BOS, which would add cost and time to the flight?

    I don’t really have a sense of how much air traffic there is or what counts as congested, but that could be part of it.

  24. JetBlue used to have a number of oddly timed flights to and from SJU, don’t know if they still do.

    I’ve long thought there could be a market for say a 2am-5am JFK-LAX flight, especially for those in flat beds up front. Since westbound flight times are longer, you would actually have some time to get a reasonable amount of sleep, unlike eastbound transcons which are sometimes only in the air for not much more than 4 hours.

  25. Back when I was a flight attendant we operated flights from sea-fai that departed at 9pm. This flight would then turn right around with a new crew.

  26. Those Spirit flights make sense. Niagara Falls & Plattsburgh are extremely useful for Canadians who are saving hundreds of dollars vs flying out of Toronto & Montreal – saving them a lot more than the average person would save on a more traditional domestic route.

    What doesn’t make sense is all the really really short redeyes out of Vegas. Btw the hours of 12:30 and 1:40am you can fly Spirit or Frontier to Houston, Chicago, St Louis, Austin, Dallas or Denver. How much are you really savings vs Southwest?

  27. aren’t there a lot of west coast cities to Midwest hubs (AA DFW/ORD, UA IAH/ORD, DL MSP) “red eyes” that are like 3 hours long with departure around 1am and arrival at like 5am? Those are just as bad if not worse

  28. @Lucky

    You realize that you need to take this flight and report on it for us now, right? ; )

  29. Not US, but OTP has to have some of the worst flight times of any airport I’ve been to. I had a friend that lived in Bucharest for a couple of years and visiting him was always aggravating. Maybe it was the route I was on, but it seemed like all of the flights to OTP arrived between 2 and 4 AM.

  30. You live near Fort Lauderdale now right? This would sure make an interesting evening/trip review! Would love to learn what you witnessed.

  31. There is a flight on Frontier. Goes from Detroit to Trenton. Arrives at midnight in the middle of a cornfield. Return flight leaves at 6 AM.

  32. Last year I flew Royal Jordanian from Amman to Doha. Left AMM at 12:55am and landed just over 2 hours later at 3:25am.

  33. Others have mentioned the Jetblue SJU flights, but I want to call out the SJU-BOS flight 862 departing at 3:04am. How many other US flights are there with a departure time in the 3-4am hour? Seems to be the absolute worst departure time.

  34. Oh, and I forgot about Aegean’s flights from Spain. Leave Barcelona at 1:30am and arrive in Athens 2h40min later at 5:10am, or leave Madrid at 1:45am and arrive in Athens 3h20min later at 6:05am. Also, Aegean seems to never leave on time, so these flights usually depart later than that.

  35. I have been on that Spirit flight at 2:35am… Without a doubt the worst flight I’ve ever had

  36. Although it does not count as domestic, Aeromexico has a lot of flights timed with 1am departurea and 4-5am arrivals on 737’s without flat beds in North America. ORD-MEX even operates in both directions with similar times

  37. United runs a couple of late night eastbound midcons from lax to iah departing after midnight and arriving before 6am. The flights are blocked off at 3 hrs but you can bet that most of the time those flights fly in less than that.

    At least UA 2352 is operated by a 777 with lie flats (possibly returning from Hawaii?). Departs LAX at 12:55am, arrives 6:00. Either way, no thanks.

  38. Am I the only one that doesnt really mind these flights, as long as you have a business class seat? I recently flew IST-DXB with a 1AM departure and 5AM arrival in TK C (albeit with flatbeds). Fell asleep when we taxied at IST and woke up on approach to DXB. Felt reasonably good all day in Dubai, after an early shave and shower. If I get 3 hours of sleep, I’m fine 99% of the time and I save the cost of a hotel night 🙂

  39. From Wikipedia:

    “Starting about 1985, Eastern offered “Moonlight Specials”, with passenger seats on overnight flights scheduled for cargo from thirty freight companies. The flights, which operated between midnight and 7 am, served 18 cities in the United States connecting mainly to Houston (IAH). Eric Schmitt of The New York Times said that the services were “a hybrid of late-night, red-eye flights and the barebones People Express approach to service.” The holds of the aircraft were reserved for cargo such as express mail, machine tool parts, and textiles. Because of this, the airline allowed each passenger to take up to two carry-on bags. The airline charged $10 for each checked bag, which was shipped standby. The airline charged between 50 cents and $3 for beverages and snacks. Bunny Duck, an Eastern flight attendant quoted in The New York Times, said that the passengers on the special flights were “a cross section of families, college kids, illegal aliens and weirdos from L.A.”

  40. I don’t understand the displeasure at the “reverse redeyes” as they seem fairly ideal to me. I would much prefer a 6-hour overnight flight going west with those local departure/arrival times than one of the dreadful 3.5 hour mid-con red-eyes like SFO-IAH even though they have departure/arrival times in the local timezones that are more “normal”.

    Luckily I can sleep on planes, but if you can’t then aren’t all redeyes equally terrible? I don’t see why the westbound redeyes would be any worse for you than a normal one, given that it’s a night with no sleep either way.

  41. I think you should take a look at flights to Puerto Rico generally. Most of the flights into and out of BQN and PSE operate in the middle of the night and there are lot to SJU as well, particularly on Spirit and jetBlue, but even United has some doosies to/from SJU and BQN. Sometimes it almost feels like the airlines treat PR the way the politicians do, throwing whatever leftovers they want and expecting them to be grateful for getting anything at all.

  42. During the original US-ification of AA, they ran some “redeyes” from DFW to the East Coast, departing DFW around 2/230am and arriving in CLT and RDU at 5am. I also seem to recall them running some longer flights like DFW-BOS departing around the same time. Pretty awful, only had to take that once and never again

  43. People will endure just about anything, or maybe they like it. Not everyone has the same work/sleep/play patterns and rhythms. I could certainly see using the airport at hours when the heavy traffic, long lines, and large numbers of people hustling or dawdling on their way to here or there are absent. I don’t mind missing out on the shopping mall that airports are becoming. I connected trains at Frankfurt at 3 a.m. not long ago. That place is one of the busiest train stations in Europe, but it was remarkably serene, even a bit mysterious in its emptiness, at that hour. Obviously the flights timed at unusual hours have found a market, smaller certainly than that for traditionally timed flights, but enough people to make a go of it.

  44. Hi, I understand your point, but I actually don’t see the problem.
    People want to fly cheap and carriers search for a solution. I’m located in Europe and nobody cares about a Ryanair flight for which you need to get up at 3AM as the flight leaves at 6AM. Because the flight is cheap. Same with spirit in the us. If these flights are cheap, or the only way to go efficiently from A to B, and people take these flights, who are we to judge? People are happy that spirit (#ryanair) provides these flights. So from luxury travel point of view, don’t look down on these flights, they are there for a reason

  45. This goes well beyond just the middle east. midnight to 6AM is peak traffic time in India and many other parts of Asia as well.

    In the western world…Europe has a few crazy ones. I did LX2077 from Porto to Geneva and that was horrendous. 2:50AM DEP and 6AM ARV. Porto airport turned off the lights inside around midnight, so people sat in the dark while waiting for the check-in desk to open!

  46. Southwest operates a 10:55pm ET from MCO to MDW; arrives MDW at 12:35a CT.
    At Thanksgiving, AA operates a bank of eastbound departures from DFW that operate in the middle of the night.

  47. I personally think those times are awesome. I wish there were more early/late departures to and from SLC. It’s an incredible time efficiency maximization and sure it’s not for everyone. But I don’t like to waste my day sitting on a plane in the middle of the day and have extra expenses or travel days just because late/early flights aren’t an option. By not having these options more PTO is used or days out of office are used. Time away from family. Etc. If you can get from point a to b while the rest of the world is sleeping, without being responsible to drive or fly, you can either dozing too, working or catching up on your shows. I think they’re worth it and I hope this is a trend that airlines pick up on.

  48. Personally, I like red eye flights…. like our recent Cathay Pacific flight from San Francisco to Hong Kong at midnight (12:35) arriving 6:30AM.

    Very comfortable and pleasant. Slept most of the 15 hours….

  49. Copa finally added a PTY-CCS departing 1:55am arriving 5:16am, for a quick turnaround for the safety of the crew.

    It’s perfect for me because I have to take a domestic flight the same and avoid the extra danger of going outside the airport to overnight.

    But yes, it takes a huge toll physically.

  50. America West used to have late night departures out of Las Vegas, which arrive in the middle of the night. I remember they had a Las Vegas to Austin flight, departed LAS at 10:30pm and arrived AUS at 3am.

  51. Also, Aerolineas Argentinas has a Buenos Aires to Ushuaia flight, departing AEP at 4:35am.

  52. Ben, I always thought that a lot of airports in the U.S. had restrictions on late-night and middle-of-the-night flights (usually due to fights that come from local residents against such things).

  53. Found a few that aren’t the most desirable:

    AS108 – ANC – SEA – 12:10am departure / 4:40am arrival
    F9 662 – SFO-DEN – 1:00am departure / 4:30am arrival
    B6 1823 – JFK – LAX – 11:00pm departure / 2:13am arrival (Think we covered this one already)

    Still not as bad as the ones listed above, but I would avoid these personally.

    Also came across NK170, which had an 18 hour delay (5/7 departure); LAS-MSP. Something to look into!

  54. What’s the big deal? As Ben said 0300 flights in the Middle East (and I’d add Asia) are happening now. Flights in the wee hours improve gate utilization and reduce gate/airport congestion. The main problem with these flights in the US, from an infrastructure standpoint, is lack of airport services at those times.

    Noise restrictions are not an issue because cargo carriers operate their hub banks mostly late night and early morning, and those planes make more noise than passenger planes. As someone who used to live 5 or 6 miles from IND, a FedEx hub, I can attest to that.

    A 0600 flight (there are plenty of those) requires getting up at what I
    consider the middle of the night anyway. Airports should make better use of their facilities. Like supermarkets, be open for business 24/7.

  55. I think that KEF has lots of action in the middle of the night every summer, but no one cares because it’s still daylight.

  56. Here in Korea, they LOVE LOVE LOVE late night red eye flights to maximize vacation time. So there’s often HKG-ICN 1:30-5:30 AM or even shorter MNL-ICN….

    But the real ridiculousness (that I once took part in).

    Korean Air, not even an LCC, operates a 2:00 AM HND-ICN. Blocked to arrive 4:35 AM but often a little earlier. They serve a full meal after takeoff, too. Flight was about 70% full on a random Tuesday when I took it. Everyone was in a good mood, no one seemed grumpy, quite odd. They also used to have a similarly timed flight from PEK-ICN.

    But the newest worst schedule now goes to Peach for the ICN-CTS 2:40 AM 5:30 arrival. The return is like 10:30 PM from CTS hence the 2:40 turn. I mean 2:40 departure at ICN, even taking the last train at 11:40 PM is still way too early – the airport is dead late at night and most stuff closed. And then what do you do at CTS THAT early?!

    Peach even offers tips on what to do for these late flights (they also have 10 PM ICN-HND and 1:45 AM HND departures)….and these flights are NOT even cheap!! Like 300$ round trip.

  57. HKG – BKK 0200-0400 with Hong Kong Airlines
    BKK – HKG 0335 – 0805 with Hong Kong Airlines as well

  58. I’m based in HKG and Cathay Dragon have a flight to Tokyo (HND) that’s popular with locals who don’t want to spring for a hotel room – depart 11:45am, arrive 5:10am. It’s often on an A321 so only regional J seats. Not sure what time transport starts at HND? Of course, if people want to travel like that, fine, but it’s not for me. Lots of other terrible flight times on LCCs to places in Thailand and other leisure destinations. No thanks.

  59. Hugo and Michael Hollifield beat me to it!
    Yes, it’s also to maximise holiday time. Have read a lot of Japanese-language trip reports on those kinds of flights, often just one or two days’ duration for leisure.

  60. civet five- I remember AA having one of those to MIA. Left DFW just before 3am like you said.

    Janet- TTN is a hilarious airport. “Baggage Claim” in a trailer. At least they now have a bathroom past security. I’m flying FLL-TTN in June, can’t beat $85 RT for a weekend trip home.

    Even AA has some late night East coast departures. In June, the 9:30pm MIA-PHL is shifting to a 10:45pm-1:35am schedule.

  61. The timing is bad I agree. I have flown the fll- Niagara nite flight several times.thats where I’m originally from and no there is nothing remotely close to Niagara airport. But I can survive the departure time as a trade off for the price, what I cannot understand is both Spirit and Frontier bare boned seats. I recently flew to Denver on both airlines and was seated in a plastic seat, with what seemed to be zero cushion literally it was a plastic seat with a thin piece of fake leather material covering it I might as well been sitting on a milk cart all night. The seats had zero angle to them it was like sitting at a 90 degree angle for the entire flight. As a matter of fact the arm rest did not even have a button to move the seat. The tray in front of me resembled a half a sheet of paper. That’s roughly 4″ x 11″. Anyting bigger then a computer bag is charged at a rate of $50 per carry on. For that price I can easily fly any other airline with all the comforts in the world and free snacks and sodas I just have to make my reservation two or more weeks ahead of time.

  62. I have the worst flight time for Spirit. From Managua Nicaragua to fort Lauderdale. Leaves at 1 in the morning so no time to sleep before and flies two hours which includes one hour plane sale. Then time changes 2 hours and arrives 5 am so no time to sleep either after. Zombie all day long.

  63. Jet Blue has a 11:59pm flight from JFK to BGI(Barbados) that lands at 4:30am…..best thing ever …that flight is always full.

  64. AS 121 SEA – ANC 0040-0315
    AS 175 SEA – ANC 2335 – 0210
    AS 94 ANC – SEA 2335 – 0405
    AS 193 LAX – ANC 2355 – 0425

    Those are some of my least favorites. Though it’s worth pointing out that 4ish am arrivals in ANC connect to first morning flights to numerous destinations throughout rural AK, so many passengers are not likely staying in ANC. Those first two SEA – ANC flights though, there’s no excuse for.

  65. A lot of those Spirit or Frontier red eye departures from LAS were old America West redeye routes from when LAS was their nighttime hub. I can’t tell you how many night connections I did in LAS on America West. I’ve done the DFW, IAH, and MIA redeyes from LAS and they’re usually pretty full too. The craziest route for a red eye was there used to be an 11:59pm departure from LAS to COS on America West (SkyWest). COS was a total ghost town when it’d arrive approx 2am.

  66. Over in Indonesia, Garuda and Lion often both only have service to some of the eastern, more remote parts of Indonesia that depart Jakarta before dawn. It’s gotten better in recent years, but there’s still some examples:

    GA622 Jakarta to Palu (2h45m flight): departs 245am arrives 630am
    ID6722 Jakarta to Kendari (2h50m flight): departs 310am arrives 700am
    GA652 Denpasar to Timika (3h35m flight): departs 125am arrives 600am
    ID6242 Jakara to Gorontalo (3h flight): departs 210am arrives 610am

  67. Funny that in the US where everything is supposed to run or to be opened around the clock departing at 3 am would seem unbearable for in Europe it s pretty common especially during the Summer season and through travel agencies selling holiday packages when people go from Northern Europe to Sunny European places(Greece,Croatia, Tunisia etc).
    You go to Paris or London airports and you have hundreds of families/ students etc passengers hanging out in airports from dinner time or later to take their flights.
    Spirit Airlines boasts being the leading Ultra Low Cost Carrier in the United States, the Caribbean and Latin America. Spirit Airlines fly to 60+ destinations with 500+ daily flights with Ultra Low Fare so passengers arenot too bohered by flight times if their tickets are ultra cheap.

  68. That’s not necessarily specific to the Gulf region. Aeroflot seems to love these ridiculous departure times as well (cheap slots, maybe?). For example, they operate Istanbul – Moscow with 2:15AM departure and 6:05AM arrival for quite some time. They also have a huge number of late night departures from European airports (sometimes it’s the last flight of the day).
    I also took plenty 5-6AM departing flights by various airlines (Alitalia, Swiss), that left me feeling much more miserable than a 2AM departing flights cause I need to be at the airport in the middle of the night.
    So yeah, nothing surprising.

  69. One more; sounds like one that Ben needs to review for the team!

    NK632 STI-FLL 0248-0500

  70. B6 also has similarly timed flights SJU-JFK/BOS/EWR/BDL (also domestic and within one time zone) as well as SDQ-JFK/BOS and STI-JFK/BOS

  71. I’ve flown that Spirit 2:30 am flight to ft. Lauderdale a couple times… And yup, did the 10:30pm flight back.
    It’s torture.
    I’m 15 mins from the airport but have been driving 45 mins to another airport for a better timed and less expensive flight.

  72. JFK POS BW
    JFK GEO BW (AA soon)
    JFK SDQ (B6)
    JFK SJU (B6)
    JFK BQN (B6)
    JFK SAL (Volaris, AV)
    JFK SAP (AV)
    JFK MEX (AM, 4O)
    JFK BGI (B6)
    JFK PTY (CM)
    All depart JFK between 12-4AM. Many flights to the LatAM Caribbean region can support middle of the night flights because of the diaspora traffic that live in New York and many times go straight to work. Flights like these make weekend trips possible and for that reason, I really like them

  73. I once had flown on Azerbaijan Airlines from Lviv, Ukraine to Baku, Azerbaijan two years ago. It was a 3h30 flight that took off at 11:20PM and lands at 3:50AM in Baku. Was super knackered upon landing. And I had to get a visa on arrival and then line up at the immigration for about an hour (many flights from Russia also arrived at around the same time) before I could head out and get some sleep. Worst redeye ever.

  74. As aircraft are expensive, it is in airlines’ interests to get as many flying hours out of them each day as possible.
    In most of Europe curfews limit night movements for the benefit of local residents to get sleep.
    (I’m not sure how much that applies in USA)
    So where they can, European airlines send their ‘planes to curfew-free places overnight, E.g VIE-DAM (before the current civil war)
    Poor countries get night-time services.

    Until the political thaw last year with Ethiopia, ALL services departing ASM left between 01:00 and 05:00, for 3-4 hour flights.

  75. In Peru there are some places (eg Piura, Iquitos) with departures at 3 am from Lima, and arrivals at 4:30 am.
    They are not cheaper, but serve working people that travel to those cities for work, and return back to Lima the same day in the last flight (11-11:30), arriving at Lima between 0:30 and 1 am. You arrive at your house by 2 am, sleep 3 hours and are back to work by 8 am. You only sleep 3-4 hours in two days and are like a zombie an entire day.
    I endured those flights many times in a past job.

  76. I used to take the Spirit flight from Phoenix to Dallas. It departs Phoenix at 12:50 AM and arrives in Dallas at 5 AM. It was the best way to get to Tampa early in the morning Friday’s to enjoy the day. Often time that flight was $60, when on AA it was $209 for the direct one at 9 AM. Even if I sprung for the Big front seat it was still less money, and more comfortable than AAs economy product.

  77. There’s a similar Spirit flight from MSP to FLL that leaves MSP at 0100 and gets to FLL at 0530. Never taken it but a cheap way to get to sunnier climes during the winter.

  78. First of all, not everyone works “day shift” or the awful 8am-5pm workday. Myself, I have worked graveyard for over 20 years and would rather be on a half empty plane getting a whole row of seats to myself than being sandwiched between screaming toddlers and people spilling out of their seats. But hey that’s me. And yes I CAN sleep fine in a flat bed, chair, car seat, sofa or floor (or lawn chair, but I digress…)

  79. Recently did the HND to BKK departing at 0040 and arriving at 0500 which was quite brutal on JAL in economy.

  80. I am very lucky to have the ability to sleep anywhere, any time, regardless of light and noise. AND can easily flip-flop from graveyard to day shift. If it means saving a significant amount on an airfare, I will fly at a nonconventional time. I only fly for leisure so I guess that makes it easier since going to meetings and I need teracribg with clients are not part of my life.

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