Florida is in a state of emergency, but wouldn't you totally love to spend your spring break here? Maybe take a cheap flight? Hit up a hotel pool?
That's what some airlines are banking on this week by posting ads for huge sales as the nation battles an increasing number of coronavirus cases. Silver Airways, which is headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, posted on its Facebook page yesterday that it's offering one-way flights to Florida and the Bahamas for as low as $59.
"Be among the first to book your travel for for [sic] spring break or summer vacations... Book today and save!" the airline posted alongside a photo of attractive 20-somethings swaying blissfully on a beach, unaffected by the global pandemic.
Spirit Airlines, which is based in Miramar, posted a similarly tone-deaf promotion offering round-trip flights to and from Miami and Fort Lauderdale for $115 or less.
"The perfect time to treat yourself? Right this minute," the airline's website says.
Perhaps the most desperate plug comes from the Denver-based Frontier Airlines. As soon as you open the company's site, you're hit by a banner ad claiming the airline has 2 million domestic round-trip seats on sale for 90 percent off.
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At a time when the airline industry is plummeting thanks to COVID-19 concerns, it's understandable that companies would offer flight discounts. According to the New York Times , American Airlines stock dropped 17 percent yesterday, while Delta Airlines experienced a 20 percent decline.
Airline employees have been laid off, and the industry is bracing for hard times as people shut themselves in and try to avoid contracting the virus by any means necessary. The last thing you'd think people would do is take a spring-break adventure to a state canceling all large gatherings.
Time will tell whether people will leave their self-quarantines to live in the fantasy these airlines are trying to sell. In the meantime, prices continue to drop faster than the stock market — flights to Miami are as low as $29.