Flying on the Cheap: Spirit Airlines Edit

Flying on the Cheap: Spirit Airlines

Rachael Sandon Blog, Destinations, General Travel Leave a Comment

Everyone loves a good deal.  Unfortunately, with airfare that usually isn’t the case as airfare can quite often be very expensive. Yuck…  Fortunately, we are seeing more and more “low cost” carrier becoming part of the mainstream air industry and even flying out of the larger city airports.  Here in Phoenix, our big low-cost carrier (aside from Southwest) is Spirit Airlines.  Spirit has received a lot of really mixed reviews, ranging from the absolute best to the absolute worst. (Although I guess even the large airlines get the same treatment.)

Here are the ways you can get the best price on Spirit Airlines!

Go to the Airport and Book Your Flight

Booking online includes “Passenger Usage Fee” that is between $8.99 and $16.99 each way.  If you head to the airport and book directly with a ticketing agent you can save $17.98 to 33.98 per person roundtrip.  That is a pretty substantial saving right there!!  Think you can avoid going to the airport by calling Spirit Customer Service?  Sorry…if you book your trip by phone there is $10 Reservation Center Booking fee.

Pack Light

The checked baggage weight limits for Spirit Airlines are a little lower than the industry standard of 50lbs.  With Spirit, you can have up to 40lbs in your checked bag and it must be under 62″ combined length.  If you are planning to have a “carry-on” bag, the dimensions can be at the most 22 x 18 x10 inches including handles and wheels.  To get the best price you need to be able to pack everything into your “personal item” which can have a maximum dimension of 16 x 14 x 12 inches including handles and wheels…sounds impossible but it can be done!  I got my bag at Costco and it meets the criteria of a personal item!  here is what it looks like:

Costco Ciao Bag - Spirit Personal Item - Black bag

Pay Your Baggage Fees Early

If you know you are going to be checking a bag (and most of us are) then pay for it up front…as you can see from the chart below…baggage will get more expensive the longer wait.  Here is a link to Spirit Airlines baggage page.

Spirit Airlines Baggage Pricing Sample

Just Say Yes to Online Check-In

Make sure you check-in for your flight online!  If you wait and do it at the airport you will have to wait in line and also pay an additional $10 fee per boarding pass.

Just Say No to Advanced Seat Assignments

Also, when you check in online you will be given your seat assignment.  Sorry, you can only change the assigned seat they give you if you bite the bullet and pay the fee.  If you are flying with someone else and are on the same reservation then you will be seated together.  If you are flying with someone and are not on the same reservation, you will be ok…read a book, sleep or chat up the person next to you and make a new friend.

Flying A Lot?  Check Out the $9 Fare Club

If you are planning to fly with Spirit Airlines a lot then you may want to check out their $9 Fare Club.  It is $60 to signup for the year and includes reduced baggage fees and access to greatly reduced airfares.  For your baggage, you will receive a $9 discount off the normal online price.  (So a round trip check bag instead of $60 it would be $42).  As for airfare, you will not get every flight for $9… some flight you may get for $9 but on most flights, you will just see a discounted price available only to club members.

Another tip for frequent fliers is to check out the TSA PreCheck Program.  Spirit was just added to the growing list of airlines that participate in the program.

Summary to get the best price: 

-Go to the airport and book your flight

-No advanced seat reservation

-Pack in a small enough bag to be your personal item

-Check in online


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Flying on the Cheap: Spirit Airlines


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