Fort Lauderdale Is A Hub For Three Airlines You Should Consider

a map of the united states

Looking to take a vacation?  Want to go someplace warm?  Maybe Cancun, the Caribbean or even South America?  Fort Lauderdale might be your best (or most affordable) choice.

American Airlines used to dominate the Caribbean with hubs in both Miami and San Juan, Puerto Rico.  San Juan has since been dismantled.  Miami is a big, sprawling airport that some people find tough to navigate.  Just north of that is Fort Lauderdale.

I used to think of Fort Lauderdale airport (FLL) as the other domestic airport in Miami.  It was usually cheaper to fly to, and less than an hour from Miami.  Now, it’s a bona fide “hub” for 4 airlines.  3 of those can get you to some pretty interesting destinations.  I came to this realization after reading Cranky Flier’s well-written post about the growth there.

It really is amazing to me how many international connections are sprouting up out of FLL.  For starters, look at Spirit’s website:

Fort Lauderdale
Spirit Route Map

I count something like 25 international destinations.  That’s a pretty decent network.  But, Ed, you say.  Spirit sucks.  I want a real airline.  Okay, how about Southwest?

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Southwest Out of FLL

There’s 9 dots in Mexico and the Caribbean that Southwest is serving from FLL.  I’m especially excited that they’re including Washington-Dulles service, which means I can make use of our companion pass to get the family to the Caribbean without having to drive an hour from my house.

But, Ed, you say.  Southwest just isn’t my jam.  I want something a bit more hip.  JetBlue to the rescue:

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JetBlue Out of FLL

I count 23 green dots out of FLL in Mexico, the Caribbean and Central/South America.  That’s a pretty good cluster of routes.

The Final Two Pennies

I’m ecstatic to have IAD-FLL up and running now.  I wish the flights were more frequent, but Dulles can be so constrained to certain areas (read, controlled by the United monopolistic pricing) that I’ll take anything I can get.

And, I’m truly surprised by the number of connecting options out of Fort Lauderdale.  It kind of snuck up on me. I’m really happy that Brett laid it all out for us to digest.  The bottom line here is that FLL should absolutely be on your radar for connecting options to warm places you want to visit.

The post Fort Lauderdale Is A Hub For Three Airlines You Should Consider was published first on Pizza in Motion


  1. I believe MIA has the longest trip to rental cars. First walk from the gate to luggage. No moving walkways. Then you take about six moving walkways. Two are almost guaranteed to be broken. You think you must have arrived but no, now you get on the MIA Mover (train). Then a few escalators. And there you are – realizing that there goes forty minutes that you’ll never get back. Choose FLL. Get in the express lanes and it’s 45 minutes to Miami.

  2. FLL is also a hub for Silver Airlines, which is a small airline that has a codeshare with United and, recently, Air Canada. Connecting between these airlines at FLL is rather simple and convenient, although might required a terminal change depending on the origin/destination.

  3. I have traveled through FLL twice and both times missed my connecting flight. The airport is not set up to handle large numbers of arriving international flights or flights that require customs upon entry. The missed flights don’t justify the low prices.

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