Golf

Bob Gillespie

SOUTH CAROLINA INSIDER

 

Non-stop to golf heaven: Spirit Airlines offers seasonal flight to Grand Strand

Posted 1/27/2013 12:09:00 PM

A couple of thoughts for all those winter-weary golfers currently looking out their windows at snow-covered yards: First, spring is on its way; second, getting to sunny South Carolina’s golf coast in 2013 will be easier – and even less expensive – than a year ago.

Starting April 25 and running through Nov. 6, Spirit Airlines will offer daily seasonal, non-stop flights to Myrtle Beach from both Baltimore-Washington International (BWI) and Philadelphia International Airport (PHL), according to Chris King at Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday. Tickets bookings and schedules are available at www.SpiritAir.com.

Sounds good? There’s more welcome news: Cheaper flights.

In 2012, King writes, the average one-way flight from Baltimore to Myrtle Beach (MYR) was $195; a one-way from Philadelphia ran $155. In 2013, Spirit will offer fares from each city starting at $39 one way – meaning even with a rental car, flying is a cost-effective means of travel to the Grand Strand, not to mention a lot quicker and easier on the body.

Those flights also will be early enough that travelers can conceivably get in at least one round on the day they arrive in Myrtle Beach. Spirit Airlines’ Philadelphia flights (Spirit 717) depart at 7:25 a.m. and arrive at 9 a.m.; the flights from BWI (Spirit 547) depart at 10:45 a.m., arriving at 12:10 p.m. (Return flights depart for Philadelphia at 9:50 a.m., arriving at 11:25 a.m.; to Baltimore, flights leave at 5:20 p.m. – time for an afternoon round at a course close to MYR on getaway day – and arrive at 6:40 p.m.

That’s the new options. Spirit already has year-round non-stop flights to Myrtle Beach from such locations as Atlantic City, N.J., Boston and New York (LaGuardia), as well as Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Starting Feb.14, daily non-stop service will begin between Myrtle Beach and Chicago O’Hare and Detroit, while three weekly flights to the Grand Strand (three weekly) from Latrobe/Pittsburgh will increase to daily flights on April 25.

Twice-weekly flights from Niagara Falls, N.Y./Toronto begin Feb. 15, increasing to four times a week April 25. Thrice-weekly flights from Plattsburgh, N.Y., and Dallas-Forth Worth also begin April 25. Finally, golfers in Charleston, W.Va. will have two weekly flights to the Strand starting March 2.

Golfers traditionally get to Myrtle Beach for spring getaways no matter how they have to travel. Flying? That just makes the experience more relaxing – and that’s definitely a worthy option.