Leave it to Spirit Air to find a creative way to pull more money out of your wallet whenever you fly with them.
They were the one who initiated the trend where passengers must pay up to $12 if they want to secure a seat next to a friend or family member. They also invented a “natural occurrence interruption fee”, a $2.50 fee to help recover the costs involved with storms and other weather related incidents (by the way they were fined $40,000 by the DOT for this illegal fee)
But now Spirit has topped the charts by asking the DOT to allow them to charge passengers for the right to purchase a ticket. We are not talking about a booking fee that third parties charge to serve as intermediaries between the traveler and the service provider. We are talking about a fee that you would have to pay directly to Spirit if you book a flight with them.
Since Spirit Air has kept the talks with the DOT behind the scenes, it is rumored that the fee will be between $5.00 and $10.00 per person.
I have two major problems with this fee.
First of all, Spirit might be forced to disclosed this fee at the time of purchase, but third parties would not, so the fee will be hidden until the very last moment when it will be buried under a bunch of other fees travel agents already chrge.
Second of all, it will create a bad precedent and soon other carriers will follow Spirit Air. I am talking all type of carriers, from airlines to busses, to trains. Once it is approved, nothing will stop any transportation company that sells individual tickets from doing the same.
I already contact the DOT and the FAA to let them know I am opposing to this fee and I encourage you to do the same.
You can contact the DOT by email on this site and the FAA on this one.
Let’s stop the insanity.
Tags: airfare, fees, spirit air
I usually do my homework whenever I’m looking for a good deal on airfare. I compare prices on sites like Kayak, and others. But even if you do your homework, there is not guarantee that a couple of days later the same airline you booked your flight with, will post a new lower fare on their website and then you are stuck with the price you paid.
So is there any way to protect your purchase against lower fares after you make your reservation?
I emailed several airline companies and asked them that question. Here is what each one had to say regarding their lower price guarantee policy.
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Tags: airfare, airlines, American Airline, Delta, Kayak, lowest fare gurantee, saving money on airfare, spirit air
I recently wrote a post recommending that if you find a similar low airfare, avoid flying in Spirit Air. I recognize that sometimes it is hard to resist the temptation when you are bombarded with emails from Spirit Air advertising round trip flights for less than $15.00. So I succumbed to the temptation and booked a flight to Fort Lauderdale -Puerto Rico. The cost? Just $130.00 for me and my wife (taxes included) I actually paid more in taxes that in airfare.
I’ve been wanting to go to Puerto Rico for the longest time. None of the cruises I’ve taken had gone to Puerto Rico, so I couldn’t resist booking a quick getaway for the two of us and decided to spend 4 days and 3 night on the Caribbean island during Thanksgiving week.
Once I booked the flight, I began searching for a nice hotel. I did the regular searches: hotwire, hotels.com, and the likes. I found several affordable hotels in San Juan, but when I read the reviews I was not impressed. So I dedicated my second round of searches to my favorite money saving technique: Timeshare presentation.
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Tags: Gran Melia Puerto Rico, Puerto Rico, spirit air, Timeshare
Spirit Airlines seems to forget that they exist thanks to their customer, and they have also forgotten the most basic strategy for the survival of any company not matter who big or small: good customer service. But then again when not even its CEO cares about the customer, what can you expect from the rest of the employees.
Yesterday one of my cousins came over my house to help him find a good deal on airline tickets from South Florida to Las Vegas. Since I got a good deal before on Spirit, I went to their site and got them a decent price on a round trip Fort Lauderdale – Las Vegas.
During the booking I entered his information, along with his wife and son. Spirit Air gave me the quote and I proceeded to the check out. Immediately after the payment was completed, I noticed that they had charged him for only two passengers instead of three. I soon realized that because my cousin’s name and his son’s name are the same, Spirit booking system rejected the third passenger thinking that I had entered the same person twice (even thought I had put his son’s middle name to distinguish it from his)
I quickly called Spirit Air to clarify the error and include the third passenger in the reservation. To my surprise, Spirit Air wanted to charge an extra $10.00 fee to change the reservation! No matter how much I argued with the customer service person and even her supervisor, they wouldn’t budge. My cousin was left with only two options: either pay the $10.00 fee or pay a $90.00 per person and cancel the reservation and re do it again. Just when I was about to scale my complain to the next person in command, my cousin gave up and agreed to pay the $10.00.
Obviously this is not about the $10.00. This is about a company who wouldn’t even acknowledge their own mistake and do something to remedy the situation. I have heard plenty of complains about absurd fees and bad customer services that plagues the travel industry, but I think this one tops the charts.
As far as I am concern, if you find a competitive rate, fly with a company that really cares about its customer.
Tags: airlines, bad company, complain, customer service, spirit air, travel
There was a time, when the flight attendants’ job was to take care of passenger’s needs and make your flight as pleasant as possible. As soon as you would push that call button, one of them would rush to your seat and asked you how they could be helpful. They would greed you when you came in, and say good bay when you left the airplane. They used to help you with your carry on luggage, guide you to your seat and a be nice in general. That is the case no more. To my horror, I discovered that flight attendants have become sales people, trying to sell you every thing, from overprices sodas and peanuts to credit card enrollments.
I have flown at least 6 times in the last 3 months with two different airlines. Delta and Spirit Air. It had been a while since my last flight (more than 3 years) so I was in shock to see how much the job of a flight attendant had changed.
I flew Fort Lauderdale to Atlanta, GA on Delta Airlines. The seatbelt sign was still on when one of the flight attendant announced over the PA system that they would begin distributing Master Card applications to all the passengers who wanted to apply for the credit card. She went on to give a long list of “benefits” if you were to apply: from bonus frequent flyers miles to cash rebates. She went on for several minutes, really trying to convince the passengers to complete the application. For a moment I felt like I was attending one of those time share sales presentation.
Several minutes later, all three flight attendants starting walking the aisles asking every single passengers if they wanted to apply for the credit card. During the whole flight they repeated the same sales pitch over the PA at least 3 other times.
Later on, they collected all the applications from those passengers who felt compelled to apply for a credit card 30,000 feet in the air.
During the flight they also announced several times that they had all kind of drinks and other items from the Sky Mall catalog for sale.
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Tags: detal airline, flight attendant, sales person, spirit air