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I usually fly SW would I like Frontier or the other discount carriers?

Discussion in 'Getting There & Getting Around' started by Bernie2, Sep 8, 2019.

  1. phade

    phade Keeping tabs on LV while not there...

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    I've flown Allegiant once on a guy's trip and it was fine. Laughable in terms of things we take for granted on a legacy carrier. I've also flown Frontier twice with family and both times have been tolerable. I recently paid for 11 people in the family to go on a cruise, and I opted to go with Frontier at a substantial savings. All said and done, I came out around $1,200 less than the best price I could find with other carriers at the time of booking. This was inclusive of bags and all upcharge fees.

    I fly Delta alot for work, so I see the difference in experience and business continuity planning/capabilities. My family on a vacation, not so much.
     
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  2. luck.ofthe.draw

    luck.ofthe.draw VIP Whale

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    I am flying Frontier for the first time this Thursday, and SW on the way back for free with points! :)

    I've flown Spirit numerous times to Vegas and San Francisco - coming from San Diego, we're talking an hour or 2 flight. I don't mind short flights to save several hundred dollars. Also, I use the "personal item" as a freebie - I can generally fit a good amount of clothes in a laptop bag or whatever.

    I've never had a problem with Spirit, and am excited to try Frontier - I got the flight during a sale, so it only cost me $35 out of pocket.

    (Other than that, I'm not a huge fan of SW. I'll fly them if I get the points, but they have no first-class option, and the "2 free bags" also applies to Alaska Airlines and United, which I much prefer over SW).
     
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  3. rhinoman7

    rhinoman7 Whale-wannabe

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    When flying with my wife, we always fly SW. When flying solo, I will go with whomever is the cheapest. For my past few solo trips, Frontier has been over $200 cheaper R/T, so I have flown with them. Since those trips were only 3 days/2 nights (flying home on the red-eye), I just packed everything in my one free personal item, so no extra charges for baggage. I did upgrade to the stretch seating for my flight TO Vegas, but stuck with the cheaper seats on the flight home. There is a very noticable different in comfort between those seats in regards to the seating area itself, so if you can get a good deal on the stretch seating, go for it!

    The main drawback for me is that it is usually cheaper to fly Frontier out of ORD over MKE. I am about halfway between the two airports, but getting around MKE is much better than ORD, and with the increased traffic at ORD, there is quite a bit of time waiting in line for a runway to take off! Also, Frontier flies out of the International terminal at ORD, and it is the furthest gate from the security checkpoint. Plus, there is hardly any seating at their gate!
     
  4. TableToddyy

    TableToddyy High-Roller

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    One plus is F/S doesn't have a half ass, kangaroo check-in & boarding system like SW.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2019
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  5. Mr. Brownestone

    Mr. Brownestone Low-Roller

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    I'm trying to wrap my head around the fact that there are carriers potentially worse than SouthWest. Doesn't seem possible in my opinion, but if that's the case I can't see anyone using them ever.

    SW is the nut low of the airlines, if someone can come in worse, I mean, I just.........
     
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  6. bardolator

    bardolator Lifelong Low Roller

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    Thank you to various critics of my last post. This is how we learn. I rethought my recent flight, did some Googling, and came up with the following:

    After making a two-minute, 90 dB (plus or minus) pitch for a credit card that carries a $79 annual fee, an attendant aboard my recent Frontier flight asked passengers to "return seats to the full upright position". Mine wouldn't recline, far as I could tell after 4 hours of experimentation. So I wondered if someone was reciting an outdated script, or having a joke, or if some seats recline using a secret lever similar to the one that purportedly raises the armrest on some aisle seats.

    Perhaps the main reason seats seem to be more narrow is the increasing width of passengers. I fly Frontier only out of desperation, so it has been several years.

    The reason I felt they were more narrow is perhaps best explained by this link: https://crankyflier.com/2015/07/21/frontiers-new-seats-give-more-room-to-the-middle-seat-and-no-room-for-your-laptop/ My wife and I used to sit window/middle with me in the middle. Recently, we switched to aisle/aisle. According to the article, middle seats are a little bit wider. Also, when we rode window/middle we didn't mind sharing the space between us, making for an apparent seat width increase.

    Perhaps some people will find this additional information to be useful.
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019
  7. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    I don't understand the hate for SW. We fly them 8-9, RTs per year and each flight is over 3 hours. Boarding is straightforward, drink service is good and the crews, for the most part, are always friendly. Flights are mostly on time. No charge to change tickets and dates. If the price goes down, no charge to rebook and get a credit for the difference that's good for 1 year. And of course no fee for the first two checked bags.

    They fly non-stop out of Milwaukee to places we like to go. Vegas, Phoenix, Seattle, Tampa and Dallas.
     
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  8. ken2v

    ken2v Wish I was in Bend

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    The boarding protocol isn't for everyone. As for being a second-tier carrier in a market with Allegiant, Frontier, Spirit and several of the legacy carriers when you don't have status ... that's just nuts.
     
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  9. h0und10

    h0und10 VIP Whale

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    Who is saying they are 2nd tier??
     
  10. mike honcho

    mike honcho Low-Roller

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    Frontier does have seats the recline.They are the stretch seats that you pay extra for. We have gone to vegas several times on frontier in the last year. Its a direct flight when no other airlines is direct for us. Follow the rules and it can be cheap. If you dont pay attention to the rules its gonna cost you in the nickle and diming for things you are accustomed to being free on other airlines. The seats are not the most comfortable. The price cant be beat espically when you get it on sale. Have flown east coast to vegas for under 100 round trip when we have caught a sale. Southwest used to be our preferred carrier but their prices have continually risen and they have dropped the direct flights to vegas for us. Last straw was being delayed several hours on our last trip with them. as in like a 4 hour delay on a flight that was already getting in late with a 3.5 hour drive home after we landed. Frontier has been on time with minimal delay for our last 8 flights with them. Yes i got the credit card they hawk on the flight. They give triple miles on restaurant purchases and 5x miles on frontier purchases. Have already gotten some free flights from the miles and feel i have more than gotten my moneys worth from the fee. I am a self admitted bargain hunter and will deal with some bs to save a bunch of money. We are people that ride the wax from the airport. If you are limo people i wouldnt bother with frontier.
     
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  11. Mr. Brownestone

    Mr. Brownestone Low-Roller

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    • Shitty boarding process
    • Changed both my flight to and from Vegas this upcoming trip due to Max8 issue they knew about prior to selling me tickets on that flight.
    • Still selling customers tickets on flights around the upcoming holidays they know damn well they aren't going to have.
    • Screwing us with Early Bird boarding yet allowing people to save as many seats as they want for people who didn't pay for EB.
    When I say they are the worst, that's a comparison to other airlines being better. If none of the above are a deal breaker for you then, by all means, continue to use SW. I'm among those that feel the money saved flying SW is no longer justifying the inferior service compared to other carriers.
     
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  12. The Rumor

    The Rumor VIP Whale

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    I have three things I don't like about it:

    - If you fly enough have status, a legacy carrier is generally better (big legroom seats, free upgrades, free seats, lounges in the airport, etc.) unless you place tremendous value on the companion pass (which you can get via credit card games anyway.) This is amplified if you ever travel internationally for work.
    - SW is no longer a deal, especially if you're someone who doesn't ever check bags (which I never do on domestic flights)
    - Lots of leisure customers who don't know how the airport and flying works
     
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  13. bardolator

    bardolator Lifelong Low Roller

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    Thank you for backing me up over the reclining seat issue. I really did look and feel around for a lever, having purchased a stretch seat, but could not find anything. YMMV on the value of a credit card deal, but I hold fast to the wish not to be shouted at with obnoxious advertising. I hope that behavior does not spread to other airlines, as many user unfriendly policies frequently do.

    I ought to add that both flights were on time and the cabin temperatures were comfortable. We used to fly Frontier a lot, including occasional Vegas nonstops. Then it pulled out of CAK, so we had not used the line for several years until last month. I felt that things had deteriorated, but that is probably true of airlines across the board.
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019
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  14. Headache 21

    Headache 21 Low-Roller

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    I've flown frontier once and spirit once.

    Spirit was surprisingly good and I'd fly them again.

    Frontier was the worst flight I've ever taken.
     
  15. jack v

    jack v Low-Roller

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    Those issues are exactly why i love SW, with them i can sit up front, almost always first 3-5 rows, with others i"m relegated to row 29,etc since i wont pay extra to move up. Also on my recent trip, I must have been originally scheduled on a MAX, so I was allowed to switch flights for free to other times and connection cities.

    I ended up with a far superior time and connection city I never was willing to pay for.

    I agree about the seat saving, but have actually only seen abuse once.