Skift Take

That's a lot of yellow on a plane. Our guess is CEO Ben Baldanza bought it all in a close-out sale.

Spirit is the latest low-cost carrier to revisit their branding, just a few days after both Frontier and Southwest, following a trend that TheDesignAir predicted last week.

The new design fits with the new website and brand positioning that has been rolled out, offering a simple bold message, with a bright and colourful design.

The first aircraft, that rolled out of the hangar two days ago features a two colour design on both fuselage, and nacelles. The bold yellow look certainly stands out and as “Spirit does not spend money on expensive advertising campaigns,” as stated by the carrier. Instead the airline will use the new livery as “a flying billboard to capture passengers attention at no additional cost.”

The carrier believes its attention grabbing look helps add a point of differentiation, a problem that all airlines are currently battling, to make passengers aware of the carrier and to ultimately get passengers on seats. “The new livery matches Spirit Airlines.” Said Ben Baldanza, Spirit’s President and CEO. “It’s radically different from other airlines, and it’s fun, just like we are.”

In traditional low-cost tradition only Spirit’s newest aircraft will come out the hanger freshly painted in the new design, the other aircraft only receiving the new look during their scheduled repaints. The two-tone design both saves painting time and reduces costs.

We don’t mind the new look, it is bold, fun, and closer in design concept to the service concept it currently portraits. The simplicity of the message is clear, and following industry standard design cues, using bold bright colours to subconsciously connect the concept of a basic, cheap product (think Scoot), that we all associate such colours with as consumers.


The hand drawn, sketchy lettering, is perhaps a little gimmicky, but softens the brand image, and obviously using lowercase logotype helps convey the concept of “friendly and relaxed.” There is a possibility that the look will date quickly, however the brand colour combination of yellow and black do normally withstand the test of time and will help keep the carrier looking fresh in the years to come.

The fine-line between legacy and low cost seems to be finally un-blurring. The fact yet another LCC carrier has opted to simplify their brand message, remove the clutter and try to simplify the product for their passengers, reiterates the subtle changes in the aviation industry, whereby these lower cost competitors strip down the experience, and on the polar end of the scale, full service carriers start bringing back the perks once associated with the legacy airlines, introducing higher quality and better experiences for their passengers.

designairsml3this story originally appeared on TheDesignAir, a Skift content partner.


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Tags: livery, low-cost carriers, spirit airlines

Photo credit: One of Spirit's planes featuring the new paint job. Spirit Airlines

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