Denver-based Ultra Low-Cost Carrier (ULCC) Frontier airlines has international expansion on its radar.
The carrier, which currently has an extensive domestic network, flies to a handful of destinations in Latin America and the Caribbean but doesn't have an aircraft in its current fleet with the range to cross the Atlantic.
That will change in 2026 as the new Airbus A321 XLR aircraft is delivered to the airline.
The A321XLR completed its first flight in June and is scheduled to enter service in 2024. Once in service, it will have the longest range of any narrowbody aircraft, being able to fly 4700nm- a distance some 30% longer than the baseline A321 model it's derived from and 700 nm more than the current A321LR variant.
All of that is music to Frontier CEO Greg Biffle's ears. Extra range means the potential opening of new routes not currently possible for the carrier. He's focused on deep South America, Hawaii, and Western Europe.
While emphasizing that the airline hasn't yet committed to any future destinations, he noted that with the XLR in the fleet, “Effectively you'd be able to go from Philadelphia (PHL) to everything in the UK, Scotland and Ireland and, of course, you can get into mainland Europe...From Miami (MIA), you can pretty much reach just about anywhere in South America. It also enables us to do other interesting things. You can fly from the [US] west coast to the Caribbean.”
While new transatlantic routes remain to be seen, the carrier remains focused on leisure travel to warm weather destinations such as Cancun, and Jamaica, with the airline just announcing Denver-to-Montego Bay service.