Frontier Shrinks Elite Program, Adds New Award Fee

Frontier Shrinks Elite Program, Adds New Award Fee

In an email to Ascent and Summit members, Frontier EarlyReturns broke the news that the current two-tiered elite program will become one tier starting Feb. 20, 2015. Currently Ascent members are welcomed into that level after 15,000 miles earned or 20 flight segments while Summit members are welcomed with 25,000 miles or 30 flight segments.

The new elite level, called Frontier Elite, will require members to earn 20,000 miles or 25 segments, splitting the difference between the former levels. Frontier Elite will offer members a free carry-on bag, complimentary Discount Den membership through June 2015 (that offers $5 a checked bag), priority check-in, boarding and security, advance seat assignment, STRETCH seating when available at check-in, last-minute award availability, call center ticketing fee waived, award redemption fee waived starting Oct. 31, 2014, free same-day standby, unaccompanied minor fee waived and same-day confirmed fee waived.

Beginning Oct. 31, 2014, Frontier is introducing an award redemption fee for all flight awards booked less than 180 days (six months) in advance of flying. This award redemption fee will be waived for all Frontier Elite members. The program has not announced what the fee will be.

Bottom line: The checked bag benefit has been removed for Elite members; in the past, the lowest tier members got two free checked bags and one free carry-on bag. Frontier also has done away with free beverages for elite-level members, which it starting offering when they no longer were offering free in-flight TV. Frontier says, “We value your opinion–if you would like to provide feedback on the new Frontier Elite tier, please email earlyreturns@flyfrontier.com.”

When introducing the new fee where members will be charged if they don’t book an award flight at least six months out, Frontier said the fee is “… a new benefit” because the fee will be waived for Elite members.

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