We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

WHY is Spirit Airlines STILL in Business????

San Francisco...
Level Contributor
14 posts
76 reviews
Save Topic
WHY is Spirit Airlines STILL in Business????

I just had a really horrific experience with this airline. Please see my comments below:

Third World Experience of First (and Last) Flight on Spirit Airlines (ZERO STAR)

This was the default option for the Expedia vacation. I had never heard of it but thought how bad can 1.5 hrs. be???? Well, I was REALLY WRONG!!!!

First off: after receiving the confirmation, I went to the site and selected seats. To pre-select seats, you have to pay anywhere from $5 to $13 or randomly get assigned seats. Not a big deal--there are no pre-selected seats at the Southwest Airlines cattle call--I'll just check in early. Then, I noticed that they charge for carry-on and for checked bags other than 1 "personal item" (usually a purse for women). Not a big deal--there are workarounds.

The biggest thing that was BEYOND the PALE was we recently had a death in the family and the service coincided with the day of our return from our trip. Asking to move the flight forward a few hours so we can attend the service, I was told, ABSOLUTELY, NO BEREAVEMENT, NO MEDICAL, NO REASON WHATSOEVER for a change, but we were welcome to pay $124/person change fee and the difference in the cost of fares. Luckily, there are also other options and my AP, the deceased sibling, WILL attend the service.

To top insult to injury, when we left, we were charged $5 for a wheelchair for my AP--normally, I would tip this amount for the service anyway, but this highway robbery definitely essentially guaranteed that the employee who hustled my AP in a wheelchair and dumped him off at the gate will not be tipped. Then, there was the matter of the plane being 2.5 hrs. late for a 1.5 hr. flight--this on top of asking passengers to arrive at the airport 2 hrs. early. Luckily for Spirit Airlines, I was still enjoying the wonderful lunch I had before I went to the airport. The final "oddity" was the charge for beverages--$4, which is not a hardship for us as we had plenty of time to ingests lots of liquids in the 2.5 hr. delay and to refill our waterbottles.

So, to save a few bucks, is it worth dealing with being nickled and dimed to death, and to be treated like cargo rather than a human being (the handling of the bereavement/medical emergencies, promoting passenger dehydration)--EMPHATICALLY NO!!!

Elk Rapids, Michigan
Destination Expert
for Lanai
Level Contributor
9,650 posts
53 reviews
Save Reply
51. Re: WHY is Spirit Airlines STILL in Business????

"Are there any airports which will still allow non flying passengers to the fare anymore?"

Sure you just need to get a special pass at the check in counter, did it with my mother in law all the time.

Illinois
Level Contributor
17,165 posts
16 reviews
Save Reply
52. Re: WHY is Spirit Airlines STILL in Business????

Many will allow a nonticketed passenger to go to the gate with a UAM. (Unaccompanied Minor)

In answer to Joe's question, I think a lot of people in the US (or at least a lot more than in the UK) do not buy travel insurance. I don't always, as my medical insurance covers me while traveling (even abroad). Therefore, I am mainly buying trip cancellation insurance, so it depends on what my cancellation costs would be. If everything is changeable (which most if not all of my nonrefundable airline tickets are) or cancellable (which most of my hotels are) then it may not be worth it.

In addition, it seems to be more expensive here. I have yet to find an affordable annual policy that would actually cover enough of an overseas trip to be worth buying. In July I paid $183 to cover a 2 week trip for 2 relatively young, healthy people (myself and daughter). The cost rises sharply if I try to add my mother.

UK
Level Contributor
49,560 posts
92 reviews
Save Reply
53. Re: WHY is Spirit Airlines STILL in Business????

the US (or at least a lot more than in the UK) do not buy travel insurance. I don't always, as my medical insurance covers me while traveling (even abroad)

------

Does that include medevac ?

Belfast, United...
Level Contributor
8,144 posts
17 reviews
Save Reply
54. Re: WHY is Spirit Airlines STILL in Business????

Hi

As Joe says, does it include getting you home, and if not what about any accommodation required while you are convalescing. A nasty fracture might only have you in hospital for a couple of days but you might not be able to travel for a while.

Then there is the big one, the one I had to face. How do you get a deceased person home.

Insurance when travelling is necessary, I also don't bother with personal items, I think my house insurance covers that, nor delays or cancellations. But full medical insurance is totally necessary whenever you leave your home country.

It does seem strange that European citizens who all have free or almost free health care are insured, Americans who have no such system and have to be insured at home don't cover their jaunts to strange shores.

Jackie

Atlanta, Georgia
Destination Expert
for Atlanta
Level Contributor
11,713 posts
97 reviews
Save Reply
55. Re: WHY is Spirit Airlines STILL in Business????

"It does seem strange that European citizens who all have free or almost free health care are insured, Americans who have no such system and have to be insured at home don't cover their jaunts to strange shores."

Not exactly. Your healthcare isn't free. You pay for your healthcare when you pay taxes, purchasing it from the government by mandate. We pay for it privately and choose (or our employers choose) from whom we want to purchase it and what amount of coverage we want. I would say that the American who has the means for international travel likely also has the means for a health insurance policy that covers international travel expense.

As with btgm, my insurance covers my healthcare, including hospitalization, overseas. The only item that isn't covered for me is medevac, which I usually purchase separately on a trip by trip basis.

ED: To the OP I just realized you did not raise this issue and apologize for hijacking your thread to comment on the insurance discussion. I'll bow out now.

Edited: 30 August 2013, 22:28
Belfast, United...
Level Contributor
8,144 posts
17 reviews
Save Reply
56. Re: WHY is Spirit Airlines STILL in Business????

The NHS is free for all whether you have contributed or not. Obviously it is funded by government but even if you have never paid a penny you are still treated.

Jackie

NYC/Israel
Destination Expert
for Israel
Level Contributor
37,562 posts
38 reviews
Save Reply
57. Re: WHY is Spirit Airlines STILL in Business????

""the last time we had a death in the family, the airline got me on a plane, even though it was essentially full-price"

So why are you expecting Spirit to cut you a break? They said they would get you on an earlier flight but you had to pay the costs involved!

"and I've escorted the assistant and my father to the gate (even though I was not flying."

Like sunmagic, I have not seen a non-passenger allowed at the gate in years and years and years.

The more you write, the lower, IMO, your credibility is getting.

Maui
Destination Expert
for Ka'anapali, Haleakala National Park, Maui
Level Contributor
57,593 posts
18 reviews
Save Reply
58. Re: WHY is Spirit Airlines STILL in Business????

She WAS flying this time, according to her posts. She objected to the way her father was "handled". The wheelchair attendant got Dad to the gate too fast and 'dumped' him there while she and others were going thru security. I read that as the attendant making sure he didn't hold them up-but that's just my thought.

Since her own relatives wouldn't delay the service for the deceased's brother to arrive........I think there are greater issues for her and her family than Spirit Airlines.

I find the pseudo MBA language like "enlightened self interest" or whatever gobbledygook silly too (and the acro "AP").

59. Re: WHY is Spirit Airlines STILL in Business????

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

TripAdvisor staff has removed this post because it did not meet TripAdvisor's forum guidelines with regards to off-topic chat. Please limit conversations to subject matter directly related to the host forum. For example: when in the London forum, please stick to topics that relate to travel within the London Metropolitan Area.

Off-Topic Chatter is a forum for discussions gone afield from the topic of travel. Please note that the Off-Topic Chatter forum is un-moderated -- the Forum Posting Guidelines are not enforced, with the exception of pornographic images or text, hate speech, unauthorized re-prints of copyrighted text, and messages that promote or encourage illegal activities. Each user is expected to take responsibility for his or her own conduct.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 31 August 2013, 13:00
Belfast, United...
Level Contributor
8,144 posts
17 reviews
Save Reply
60. Re: WHY is Spirit Airlines STILL in Business????

Hi Joe

Goodness knows, I don't, but then I'm not very good.

Jackie