Sun Country soars as it ramps up growth

Sun Country Airlines is on the way its fourth-consecutive profitable year. The Star Tribune reports Minnesota's only locally based airline, which was taken over by the owners of Cambria 18 months ago, is about to expand its fleet, its routes and its frequent flyer program.
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Sun Country Airlines is on the way its fourth-consecutive profitable year. The Star Tribune reports Minnesota's only locally based airline, which was taken over by the owners of Cambria 18 months ago, is about to expand its fleet, its routes and its frequent flyer program.

The airline plans to add three more Boeing 737s next year, bringing its fleet to 17 planes. Sun Country will begin new seasonal service to Tampa, Fla. and is looking into expansion into other new markets. In January, Sun Country will unveil a revamped loyalty program to let frequent fliers pool their miles for free travel.

The airline also provides charter service to the military and to Big 10 athletic teams.

Sun Country was previously owned by businessman Tom Petters. The Davis family of southern Minnesota purchased the airline for $34 million in 2008 as the Petters empire collapsed.

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Sun Country pilots picket at MSP International Airport

Pilots with the Mendota Heights-based carrier are upset that they're still working under a contract agreement inked when Sun Country was in bankruptcy. A spokesman for the Air Line Pilots Association tells the Star Tribune pilots for Southwest Airlines are paid nearly twice as much as Sun Country for flying the same aircraft.