My First Frontier Flight

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Last Friday I unfortunately lost my 91-year-old Grandmother (who just three months ago was playing tennis, may I add!) . The funeral was to be held in South Florida and as many of you know last minute flights typically are not cheap. Fortunately though, that same morning that she passed, Frontier Airlines had an amazing 50% off sale for any route on select dates. I believe there were 5 days eligible for the promo code and fortunately my return from Miami fell on one of those 5 days. My Grandfather is really where I inherited my “deal” genes, so I have a feeling he had something to do with this perfectly timed sale! He hated paying full price for anything!

The Frontier flight was $94 and a good $150 less than any other airline. So I went ahead and booked it! I know some people don’t love Frontier, but when a good deal comes along I have a hard time passing. I also wasn’t flying for the experience and just needed a plane to get me from point A to point B. It was my first time booking with Frontier.

When making the reservation I declined paying extra to pay for my seat. For those new to Frontier, they have an a la carte system where you pay for only the “extras” you need. To select your seat ranges from $6 to $11 depending on when you reserve it (you pay less if you book it when making your reservation) and then you can pay a premium to get a “better” seat as well. I opted to wing it and save the money. Of course I ended up in a middle seat three rows from the toilet! Frontier seems to be extremely strict with not swapping seats once you are on the flight. My flight was pretty full and no one was allowed to find a different seat then what was on their boarding pass. Maybe with an empty flight they are more lenient, but I have no idea.

I also did not pay for any extra baggage. Frontier charges $35 for a carry on bag and $25 for a checked bag as long as paid for in advance online. While the extra baggage cost still would have been cheaper than booking with another airline, I strategically packed for the trip. Frontier only charges for carry on bags that go in the overheads above. Anything small enough to fit in the seat in front of you is free. Since I was only away for 36 hours I took as little as possible and was able to pack in shoulder bag. Although a bit snug, it ended up fitting perfectly under my seat and I was able to save myself some money.

The plane ride was a plane ride. I typically sit in coach and thought the back of the plane was as good as any other. I actually found the legroom to be quite nice and way better then my recent Delta flight. The flight was on time, got me to where I needed to go, and even allowed me to sleep a bit. There were two things I hated: 1) There were no magazines in the back of the seat so I couldn’t play Sudoku, and 2) The tray tables were tiny! A computer would not fit on it, so I had to keep it on my lap when using it. Other than that, everything went off with a hitch.

Overall, a fine flight experience, but make sure you take all their fees into consideration. I also suggest signing up for their emails to find out when good deals are coming. They happen at least every other day! And if you use a third-party search engine to compare prices (i.e., Kayak), know that they will only aggregate Frontier’s base price and will not take into account any coupon codes. Frontier often runs promotions where you will get X% off, but you’ll need to enter a code directly on Frontier’s reservation site. For the right price, I absolutely will book with Frontier again. In this scenario, I knew I could get away without paying for a bag and I was flying solo so didn’t worry about any seat assignment fees.

Hopefully many of you have been able to take into consideration many of Frontier’s amazing offers!

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  1. Sorry for your loss. I am from South Florida. I live very close to the Fort Lauderdale airport. I always have the option to go to either the Fort Lauderdale airport or Miami airport. 45 minutes apart sometimes makes a huge financial difference. Glad you found a deal. Once again, sorry for your loss.

  2. Sorry for your loss!
    We took Frontier to Dulles for a long weekend in DC last fall. I would say it was great! I book during one of their “sales” and it was $79 rt. We also did not pay for baggage or extra seating. The plane loads pretty quickly when very little goes into the over head bins! On the way back we carried our own Cokes on and had some free entertainment when a woman kept trying to sit in the exit row she did not pay for. For the price I would do it again in a heart beat! Between hotel points, $79 flights and free museums it was a perfect cheap weekend!

  3. Flew Frontier from Orlando to St. Louis yesterday. Got to wonder if the plane was one of the 100 that the credit card ‘expert’ bragged about. The video units are gone, scaled back serving tray, can’t recline and seat padding is a joke. Not one seat pocket had a menu of the overpriced items available on the cart.

    Now there is a D.C. event later in September I might attend. I flew last December R/T through Dulles; but that route has been 86. My best option is a Megabus ride to Chicago and fly out of Ohare. When will the Metrorail be completed out to Dulles? IMHO, $7 each way is a rip-off and next bus might be a 40 minute wait.

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