Spirit Airlines has reported total operating revenue for the third quarter of 2020 of US$401.9 million, a decrease of 59.5% year over year as demand for air travel remains depressed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Based on current demand and level of operation assumptions, Spirit estimates its fourth-quarter total operating revenue will be down approximately 43 to 45% year over year.
The Company continues to experience a significant decline in demand due to COVID-19. Load factor for the third quarter 2020 was 68.1% on a year-over-year capacity decrease of 33%.
For the fourth quarter of 2020, Spirit estimates its capacity will be down approximately 25% year over year. On a monthly basis, Spirit estimates its capacity for October will be down approximately 36% and that November and December will both be down about 20% compared to the same periods last year.
For the third quarter of 2020, total GAAP operating expenses, including US$148.3 million of special items, were US$501.4 million, a decrease of 42.2%, year over year. Adjusted operating expenses for the third quarter 2020 were US$649.7 million, a decrease of 24.3% year over year. These changes were primarily driven by a 62.9% decrease in aircraft fuel expense due to decreases in both fuel rate and volume.
Spirit reported a net loss of US$99.1 million for the third quarter of 2020 and ended the quarter with unrestricted cash, cash equivalents, and short-term investment securities of US$2.1 billion.