Silver Airways is a low-cost alternative for flights that travel between Florida, the Bahamas, Maine, and Massachusetts. Although daily flights and destinations are limited, this airline is an excellent way to save money on flights when you aren't short on time for traveling during your vacation.

Smaller airlines are an excellent option for travelers who are looking for cheaper and shorter flights between closer locations. Not only do these flights offer travelers more options than some of the bigger airlines available, but they can cater to niche markets looking to get from one specific point to another.

Silver Airways has hubs in Florida and the Bahamas which makes it a popular choice for many travelers. Although it is a smaller airline, there are many benefits to consider when booking your next flight.

What Is Silver Airways and How Does It Work?

Silver Airways is an airline based in the United States and was founded in 2010. Many of their assets are derived from the former airline called Gulfstream International, and their headquarters are in Fort Lauderdale.

Their main airport where their headquarters is located is in the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport which is located in Broward County Florida. This airline currently runs about 100 flights each day that focus on:

  • Ten cities in Florida
  • Eight locations in the Bahamas
  • Two cities in the Northeast

Their many hubs in Florida are located in Fort Lauderdale, Tampa, and Orlando, and several of their flights are between these points.


This airline also receives a federal subsidy called the Essential Air Services subsidy which exists to help more rural or small airports to function within the United States. In 2013, Silver Airway received over 20 million as part of their annual federal funding from this subsidy.a

What Is Silver Airways and How Does It Work?

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When Gulfstream International filed for bankruptcy in 2010, their assets were bought by a business venture called Victory Park Capital. This entity purchased 21 aircraft from Gulfstream International Group, and the airline was re-named Silver Airways.


This new airline had many adjustments it needed to make in order to become profitable, and many of their initial moves were to relocate their hubs and alter the locations that they covered for travel. In 2012 they took their first steps by establishing their headquarters at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport.


They took over an old facility previously owned by the Eclipse Aviation Company that had vacated the facility in 2009 and quickly purchased new aircraft to accommodate their new network of locations.

Included in their initial changes was the hiring of new staff, and the industry expert Dave Pflieger was brought on board to help strategize where the airline would operate and what other changes would need to be made. The airline then announced it would end its operations in Montana over the upcoming months.


In 2014 the changes to the network that Silver covered continued and they ended the operation of some of their initially purchased aircraft in an effort to close down operations in Cleveland. The Victory Park Capital Group then secured an additional 73 million in funding and formed a partnership with JetBlue that same year.


Dave Pflieger was still the CEO at this point and described the budding airline as part turnaround, part partnership, but also an independent airline looking to stand alone when the time was right. Until then the focus of this airline was to exceed customer expectations and to continue to grow sustainably.


By 2015 Silver had secured its hold on a workable network in Florida and engaged the US Department of Transportation in an effort to secure cities in Cuba. They ended up being granted nine Cuban cities to add to their network.


In 2016 the airline also formed a partnership with Frontier and Great Lakes Airlines which helped them later be acquired by Versa Capital Management and order more planes in late 2017.

New Beginnings

Silver Airways is an airline based in the United States and was founded in 2010. Many of their assets are derived from the former airline called Gulfstream International, and their headquarters are in Fort Lauderdale. Their main airport where their headquarters is located is in the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport which is located in Broward County Florida. This airline currently runs about 100 flights each day that focus on:

  • Ten cities in Florida
  • Eight locations in the Bahamas
  • Two cities in the Northeast

Their many hubs in Florida are located in Fort Lauderdale, Tampa, and Orlando, and several of their flights are between these points.


This airline also receives a federal subsidy called the Essential Air Services subsidy which exists to help more rural or small airports to function within the United States. In 2013, Silver Airway received over 20 million as part of their annual federal funding from this subsidy.a

What Makes Silver Airways Unique

Silver offers a number of features that make it a unique airline for travelers to consider. Like many other airlines, there are the standard features such as travel insurance, mileage memberships, optional services, online check-in, flight status updates, and refund protection, but there are also unique options like pet fares.


Silver offers some of the lowest pet fares in the industry, but the catch here is that they don't fly everywhere as other larger airlines do on a regular basis.  The tradeoff here is that you get cheaper fares, but you may have to deal with more delays and other inconveniences along the way when you fly Silver.


The website for this airline is also what you’d expect from any major airline, and their signature pink and silver colors are found everywhere, even on their planes. Silver also pairs with different resorts and hotels to offer guests exclusive savings and various options for accommodations at discount rates.


Silver has partnerships with different rental car companies, and travel insurance agencies as well including Avis, and Budget for car rentals and Allianz for travel insurance. You can find more information about these partnerships on their website.


You can also book your Silver flights on www.booking.com which allows you to see all of the locations that Silver has in their network. As the locations expand, travelers can take advantage of less expensive flights to new places.


This airline also partners with a wide variety of other airlines including Alaska Airlines, ANA, American Airlines, Avianca, Delta, and Bahamas air. These partnerships allow for unique frequent flyer mileage offers and the ability to also take United and JetBlue flights.


Silver is also unique in the sense that it is smaller than other airlines and their planes are also smaller than most other airlines. Due to the shorter nature of the flights that they offer, Silver can make do with smaller aircraft than airlines that offer flights that are several hours long.


Lastly, most other airlines have a set network that doesn’t change much from year to year and travelers can expect the same offerings from these bigger airlines. Silver is different as it offers new cities more often as their network expands to include more cities.


More recently, Silver has added locations in Maine and Massachusetts to their already robust network of sites in Florida and the Bahamas. These two new locations in the Northeast United States are likely the first with more to come, and these network locations will open up a wider variety of travel options for other parts of North America.

Pricing

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Silver offers a number of introductory and limited time pricing for various flights in their network that will last for several months at a time. For example, one of their promotions is for travel to Daytona Beach for an introductory rate of $59.


Not only is this rate very low for any airline, but their slogan is “cheaper than driving” which is impressive from a cost perspective. The airline also offers “everyday low fares” to different parts of the Bahamas for as little as $107 before additional charges.


Some of these offers last only a day, but most of them last longer. Other examples of prices include Daytona Beach to Bimini for $107, Daytona Beach to Marsh Harbour for $153, and Governors Harbour to Daytona Beach for $207.


These fare rates do not include extra charges for things like travel insurance, or up charges so that you can change your flight later. It also doesn’t include the cost of checked bags which start at $30 each for domestic travel.


If you book your flight online, there is no fee, but if you make your reservation at the airport or through the call center, there's a fee of $ added. Choosing your seat costs $ for flights up to 90 minutes, and $ for flights over 90 minutes.

Public Perception (Other Silver Airways Reviews)

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The public reviews and feedback about Silver are overall not very good as the airline continues to be plagued with delays, canceled flights, and miserable customers. Although one of the goals of the airline is to exceed the expectations of customers, it would appear that customers are often not considered once there are issues with a flight.


Examples of problems that seem to happen frequently include changes to the scheduled flights sometimes with a few week’s worth of warning, sometimes with far less. These changes can adversely affect the plans that travelers have made, and the uncertainty is not well received.


Flights are also canceled at times without any warning and without any directions for passengers on what they should do next to get a new flight. Refunds are frequently granted, but there’s an additional fee for booking a flight when at the airport unless you are able to do it online which may also incur a fee.


For those that are able to catch their flight as scheduled, they generally report a good overall experience, and the quick flights mean that travelers get where they are going fairly soon. The advice from other travelers is that it's okay to use this airline provided that you don't have to be at your next location at a particular time.

How It Compares

As far as airlines go, Silver is comparable to others such as JetBlue when it comes to cheaper fares. Frontier is also another smaller airline that uses low prices to lure in customers. Given the reputations of these two other companies, it's not surprising that they are similar in other ways and that customers rank them similarly.


There are some differences between the airlines though, most notably in the networks that they serve. Frontier and JetBlue have much larger networks than Silver that span over multiple countries. They also have more flights on any given day.


Their fee structures are also a bit different with few cheaper fares available than Silver. This price difference is because they have fewer flights going such short distances. If you are a traveler going a short distance, then Silver may be a worthwhile airline to check out for deals.

What We Think

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Using discount airlines is always a risk, but that doesn't necessarily mean they can't be part of a well-planned out trip or a last-minute vacation. There are ways that you can mitigate the risk of using a smaller airline and still have a successful holiday.


Planning ahead and not making a strict schedule can help significantly and will allow you to use an airline like Silver that might mean altering plans at the last minute. If your flight is canceled, then you'll need to have some alternative flights in mind and have a plan for what you'll do next.


While booking another Silver flight is always an option, you may also have other airlines to choose from such as Frontier or JetBlue, and you can typically get on standby for a flight as well. These options are not as convenient as taking your originally scheduled flight, but if cost is your primary concern and you have extra time, then it's not a bad way to travel.


Provided you have some spare time, traveling on Silver will allow you to save some money and fly to locations such as the Bahamas from select areas in the United States. While Silver doesn’t cater to all parts of North America, if you can make it to Florida you can enjoy the area or move to different islands in the Bahamas.

Coupons and Deals

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Besides www.booking.com, you can book Silver flights on other sites such as Expedia and the Silver website directly. There are also other online sites such as Jet Cost where you can book Silver flights through a number of third-party retailers.


On the Silver website, there are a rotating number of deals for flights going to and from different locations. Current deals range from $59 to $207 and can be booked in advance as you would a regular flight.


There are also deals on resorts such as the La Bougainvillea Resort in Governor’s Harbour, and Buttonwood Reserve in Eleuthera, Bahamas. Other deals are also available on the Silver website for resorts and hotels in Florida and the Bahamas.


You can expect to save between 15% and 20% on various accommodations through the offers on Silver's website, but the exact savings will depend on the deal being offered at the time.


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