Rate Spirit Airlines FREE SPIRIT

Discussion in 'Other Airlines | North America' started by Darcie, Oct 22, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. Darcie
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    Darcie Silver Member

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    InsideFlyer magazine is reviewing Spirit Airlines FREE SPIRIT in our December issue and would like your input.

    If you would like to participate, please post your response in the thread with the pros and cons of membership in FREE SPIRIT and grade the program from A to F (A being the highest grade). You can include a plus or minus with the rating.

    You can also respond directly to the editors at InsideFlyer at dmankell@insideflyer.com if you would prefer.

    Thank you.
     
  2. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    Three month expiration of miles.
    Have to book 180 days in advance to avoid close-in redemption fees.
    No redemption partners: your reward for flying Spirit is you have to fly more Spirit.

    Meh.

    Are there values on the award chart? Can the airline be cheap if you don't need any of the things that generate fees? Sure. Although those 5000 mile tickets (for co-brand credit card holders) generally line up to fares under $100, you're not getting much value out of miles even then...

    Free Spirit makes Delta look good.

    D. Minus.
     
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  3. mommypoints

    mommypoints Gold Member

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    We all know Mr. Fancy Pants would NEVER fly on a Spirit flight......but. There are tons of cons, no doubt. However, I have watched my parents get tremendous value from Spirit in the last year or so. They started when Spirit handed out free miles to anyone who would show up in Houston and then they got the Spirit credit card which allowed them to book round trip flights for 5,000 miles round trip. They have taken 7 or 8 flights on these free miles because it's only 2.5k each way. In fact, I am taking my first Spirit flight in a week or so using their miles because it is too good of a deal not to give it a try. Availability isn't great for the 5k RT flights, but it isn't terrible either. It is best for those with real flexibility who want to stretch their miles and just get from Point A to Point B. If you wanted to, get the Big Front Seats for like $40 extra and you now are basically in domestic F without the free gross food for 2.5k miles + $40ish.

    Your only real downside is in the case or IRROPS in which case you are a little up a creek.
     
  4. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    What would the cost of those 5000 point tickets have been if you had paid cash?
     
  5. druiddation
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    druiddation Gold Member

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    D-minus seems accurate. In the past they were a clear F when you couldn't even search award availability online.
     
  6. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    Unsurprisingly, today brings us this Milepoint thread:
    "Spirit Airlines Travelers Stranded in Fort Lauderdale"
    http://milepoint.com/forums/threads/spirit-airlines-travelers-stranded-in-fort-lauderdale.73218/

    I like the airline's sense of humor, and I think that their President B. Ben Baldanza is remarkably candid. When he was at US Airways it was his comment about people buying the cheap fares the airline offered (in the aftermath of 9/11!) not being the kind of loyal they were interested in that spurred the 'cockroach' movement. He's also the one known for hitting reply all on customer complaints instructing that disserviced passengers get nothing because service doesn't matter in purchasing decisions.

    The reward for flying Spirit -- provided you earn miles every 3 months -- is flying more Spirit. That alone justifies the D rating. Because that's more of a punishment.
     
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  7. mommypoints

    mommypoints Gold Member

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    It varies, but for my dates I think it was about $70 each way. It can certainly be less, can be a bit more. However, getting a free flight for every $1,250 you charge on the credit card (2x points on everything and free flights at 2,500 each way) is absolutely untouched by anyone in the market...but that "free" flight at the end of it all will be on Spirit Airlines.
     
  8. mommypoints

    mommypoints Gold Member

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    Also to be clear, I think a D rating for the program as a whole is likely close to what I would also rate it for all the reasons already stated, however I think the credit card's reward earning potential related to the rewards program deserves better than a D. I know that isn't exactly the question at hand, but it is worth pointing out. I know for sure my parents who actually use it way more than most of us here discussing it would certainly rate it higher.
     
  9. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    $140 in travel for 5000 miles is less than three cents per mile. It's not bad for domestic but hardly revolutionary. And Spirit does have a pretty limited route network, and no options to fly outside of that network. So even the return on their credit card is limited.

    Are there people that can make this work for them? Sure. Is it a better program than the median airline offering? Not even close. Since it's worse than average, I give them a grade that's worse than average. :)
     

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