Review: Frontier Airlines A320neo Stretch Seats (ISP-TPA)

Review: Frontier Airlines A320neo Stretch Seats (ISP-TPA)

FROM: ISP
TO: TPA
CABIN: Economy
DATE: July 2022
REVIEW RATING:
BEN SAYS: The Frontier Airlines experience is rough, with no inflight entertainment, fees for everything, and tight seats. While I appreciate ultra low cost carriers, this isn't an experience I'm looking to repeat.
39

Suffice it to say that my trip to Dubai went from one extreme to the other. While my journey started with Emirates first class, it ended with a flight on Frontier Airlines. I had never flown Frontier Airlines before, so I was kind of excited about this flight, since I always enjoy experiencing new (to me) airlines.

Well, unfortunately the Frontier Airlines experience was kind of awful, and much of it isn’t even Frontier’s fault. Still, it’s not an experience I’m looking to repeat.

How I booked our Frontier Airlines tickets

After flying from Belgrade to New York on Air Serbia, I headed to the Hamptons for a few days, where I met Ford. The closest airport to there is Long Island MacArthur Airport (ISP). Since we needed to travel to Tampa (TPA) next, there was only one real option, and that was Frontier. The airline had a nonstop Sunday evening flight, so that’s what we decided to book.

The flight was expensive to begin with (by Frontier Airlines standards), at $140.

Frontier Airlines ticket price

We were coming back from a long trip to Europe, so we still had full size carry-ons, checked bags, etc. Since Frontier is an ultra low cost carrier, the airline charges for everything. Fortunately Frontier sells “bundles,” where you get a bunch of things included at a fixed cost.

We decided to purchase “The Works Bundle,” which cost an extra $151 per person. This included:

  • A personal item
  • A carry-on bag and the ability to board first
  • A checked bag
  • The ability to select any seats, including Stretch seats
  • Priority boarding
  • Flight flexibility and refundability
Frontier Airlines price bundling

In the end our tickets cost $291 per person. That’s obviously pricey, but for early July nonstop travel, it still seemed like the best option. By the way, I found it interesting that during the booking process it kept referencing how we were “saving” $548 ($274 per person), I guess by buying the bundle. C’mon Frontier, we weren’t looking to charter the plane, just to travel with a couple of bags. 😉

Anyway, the Frontier Airlines booking process isn’t as quick as with other airlines, as you’re asked endless questions, even when you buy the bundle. First we could select seats — it’s nice that Frontier’s Stretch seats can be selected with this bundle, as they offer way more legroom, and are actually different seats altogether.

Frontier Airlines seat selection

We also had to confirm how many bags we planned to check, and were asked if we wanted to buy any extra bag weight (Frontier recently lowered the checked bag weight limit to 40 pounds, using the environment to justify the change).

Frontier Airlines checked bag options

We were even asked if we wanted to pre-purchase agent assistance at the airport, since Frontier apparently charges for that as well. That was included with our tickets, not that we really needed it (beyond checking a bag).

Frontier Airlines agent assistance options

Frontier Airlines check-in & boarding

We arrived at Islip Airport around 2.5 hours before departure (we didn’t know what traffic would be like, and didn’t want to miss the flight).

Islip Airport check-in desks
Islip Airport check-in desks

The terminal wasn’t too busy, but there was a long line at the Frontier Airlines counter. Fortunately the line moved fast, since it was only people checking their bags (most people aren’t going to pay extra for airport assistance to print a boarding pass, for example).

Frontier Airlines check-in desk Islip Airport

I couldn’t help but notice the signage, which personally I found to be off-putting and patronizing, which in many ways sums up the Frontier Airlines experience. Be pressured into paying Frontier Airlines’ fees now, because otherwise your fellow passengers will hate you when you board. Nice!

It’s the same as how Frontier constantly promotes itself as America’s greenest airline, and any customer unfriendly changes are attributed to that.

Frontier Airlines check-in signage

When we got to the check-in counter the agent printed a bag tag, put it on my bag, and then said “oh, we can’t check your bags until two hours before departure. If we check it now, it might not make the flight” (I saw the sign below after we were informed of this).

Frontier Airlines check-in signage

It’s rare to see a policy like that in the United States, in my experience. Is Frontier just creating unnecessary rules, or is there something about how Frontier Airlines loads bags on planes that necessitates this?

Anyway, we had a seat in the check-in hall, where I overheard a lady’s 30-minute phone call with Southwest. Apparently she had booked the ticket for the wrong day, but was then shocked to find out there was a fare difference to switch to the flight in a couple of hours, since she thought Southwest had no change fees.

That kept me entertained, and then at the two hour mark we headed back to the counter to check our bags. It’s odd that Frontier Airlines doesn’t have scales at its counters at Islip Airport, despite the fact that the airline has such a low checked bag weight limit. The agent lifted our bags to “eyeball” the weight, as he explained. Interestingly there was a scale passengers could use to weigh their own bags, but it wasn’t near the check-in desk.

Frontier Airlines checked bag scale

We were through security in no time, and soon enough were in the gate area for our flight. With all the travel chaos this summer, it sure is nice traveling out of a rather small airport.

The amount of carry-on related signage that Frontier has in the gate area is pretty unreal. Then again, I imagine it’s for good reason, as many people probably try to sneak on carry-ons and pretend they don’t know the rules.

Frontier Airlines departure gate

Boarding for the flight was scheduled to start at 6:34PM, 45 minutes before departure, though our plane only arrived at gate A3 less than an hour before departure. It’s cute how Frontier Airlines puts a different animal on the tail of each plane (the carrier’s slogan used to be “a whole different animal,” but I don’t think that’s being used anymore?).

Specifically, this plane was an Airbus A320neo with the registration code N346FR. The plane was only delivered in 2019, so it was just over three years old.

Frontier Airlines Airbus A320neo

I found the entire gate experience to be odd in terms of the staff. First of all, the Frontier gate staff weren’t in uniforms, but rather were wearing hoodies and other “regular” clothes, so it was almost hard to figure out who was working there, and who was a passenger.

The ground staff seemed to go on the plane to clean it between flights (or at least they boarded with vacuums and trash bags), before coming out and starting boarding. One of the gate agents seemed to have a pretty bad cold, and kept blowing his nose, sneezing, and even wiping snot from his nose between helping passengers, with no sort of washing of hands or disinfecting. I mean, I feel bad for him, but still…

Boarding ended up starting around 20 minutes behind schedule, at around 6:55PM. Once boarding did start, Zone 1 was invited to board first (which includes all passengers with a paid carry-on).

Frontier Airlines departure gate signage

Frontier Airlines Airbus A320neo cabin & seats

At the door of the plane we were greeted by a sign about how we were flying with “Al the Roadrunner.” It’s cute that the animal theme continues inside the aircraft, at least at the entrance.

Flying with Frontier Airlines’ “Al the Roadrunner”

Frontier’s A320neos feature 186 seats, which is about as many seats as you’ll find on this kind of plane. The first three rows of Frontier’s A320neo cabins are Stretch seats, which are Frontier’s extra legroom seating. While Frontier has as little as 28″ of pitch in most of the cabin, Stretch seats have five to seven extra inches of legroom, which makes a big difference.

Frontier Airlines Stretch seating

I’s not just that there’s more legroom, but the seats as such are different. They have different patterns, different seat backs, different tray tables, and they recline. I have to say, the lack of a headrest was noticeable, as that can make a seat much more comfortable. The seats also felt painfully thin to me.

Frontier Airlines Stretch seating legroom

Ford and I were in seats 2D & 2F, and the legroom was very good, I’d say at least as good as the extra legroom economy sections you’ll find on the major US carriers. We also lucked out with an empty middle seat between us, even though the flight was nearly full. That’s a benefit of selecting these seats as well, since they’re probably less likely to be filled up than other seats (given the cost).

Frontier Airlines Stretch seating legroom
Frontier Airlines Stretch seating seatback
Frontier Airlines Stretch seating tray table

The plane had overhead reading lights and individual air nozzles. Unfortunately that’s it as far as the seat amenities go, as there are no power outlets at any seats.

Frontier Airlines A320neo overhead console

Frontier Airlines’ standard economy section looked really tight, with just 28″ of pitch. Not only was legroom limited, but the seats were thin, and interestingly the tray tables were about 50% smaller than usual as well, which I’ve never seen before at a US airline.

Frontier Airlines standard seating legroom

I thought the plane was in horrible condition for a fairly new A320neo. I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many scratches and scuffs on a fairly new plane. Then again, that’s not surprising given Frontier’s aircraft utilization, how many passengers are on these planes, and how they seem to act (at least based on my flight).

The lavatory was also absolutely filthy. I’d highly recommend avoiding going to the bathroom on Frontier if you can.

Frontier Airlines A320neo lavatory

Frontier Airlines Airbus A320neo entertainment & Wi-Fi (lol)

Admittedly ultra low cost carriers are typically pretty no frills, but Frontier Airlines takes it to the extreme. The airline has no inflight entertainment whatsoever — there’s no Wi-Fi and no streaming entertainment.

I made a rookie mistake — I figured it was only a short flight, so I didn’t need to download any shows on my iPad. Well, I can now officially report that a 2.5 hour flight feels at least twice as long on Frontier without your own entertainment. Don’t make the same mistake.

It’s interesting to see how ultra low cost carriers have taken different approaches here — Spirit Airlines, meanwhile, has high-speed Wi-Fi on almost its entire fleet. That’s another reason I far prefer Spirit to Frontier.

Frontier Airlines buy on board food & drink selection

What was service like on this 2hr43min flight? Frontier Airlines has a buy on board menu, so nothing is offered complimentary. You can find the menu below.

Frontier Airlines buy on board menu
Frontier Airlines buy on board menu
Frontier Airlines buy on board menu
Frontier Airlines buy on board menu

We were kind of hungry, so we decided to put the Frontier Airlines menu to the test. We decided to order a snack pack, a cheese plate, a still water, and a seltzer water. Frontier has some discounted bundles, which sounds great in theory, though the crew seemed to have trouble keeping track of the different options.

Since we had two non-alcoholic drinks and a snack, we could take advantage of the “Cortez the Green Turtle” bundle for $13, which saved us $2.

Frontier Airlines buy on board items

As far as the food goes, it was… okay? I’d say the cheese plate was a bit below average for a buy on board option, as it felt a bit more like a Lunchables box than a cheese plate.

Frontier Airlines cheese tray

Meanwhile the snack pack had a variety of tasty packaged things…

Frontier Airlines snack pack

By the way, Frontier Airlines is known for allowing flight attendant tipping. It was my understanding that when you’re given the credit card machine, you have the option of adding a certain percentage tip. I was surprised to see that this wasn’t an option on this flight. Did the airline discontinue this practice, or…?

Frontier Airlines service & passengers

Really my biggest issue with the Frontier Airlines experience was the behavior of fellow passengers. Of course I can’t say for sure that’s reflective of all flights, but based on all my flying experiences, I’ve never seen anything like this before on a domestic flight in the United States.

Even though I have low expectations of the traveling public, I still managed to be surprised. People didn’t seem to flush when using the bathroom. There was pee all over the floor. Some people didn’t even bother closing the bathroom door. Several people even went into the bathroom barefoot, and one person seated near us went to the bathroom barefoot and then rested their feet on the armrest in front.

Frontier Airlines A320neo lavatory

Then there was the guy who repeatedly tried to go into the bathroom (barefoot) with a big bag of stuff. The crew told him over and over he couldn’t take that in there, but he kept trying. He’d line up for the bathroom every time right where my seat was.

What is going on here?!

Then there was the guy seated immediately in front of me, who was watching something on his iPhone for nearly the whole flight with headphones on. Perfect, right? Well, for an hour straight, he would laugh out loud probably every 10 seconds. I’m not talking just a quiet chuckle, but rather more of a screaming laugh. Over and over and over and over. Even with earbuds in I could hear him.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg, but seriously, the crowd on this flight was unlike anything I’ve seen before. I’m not sure if it has to do with the route, the airline, or a combination of both, but I want to minimize my risk of repeating this experience.

Frontier Airlines service

The crew on this flight seemed to be generally well intentioned, though I found various aspects of the experience to be weird:

  • There were repeated announcements during boarding about running out of overhead bin space; this doesn’t make much sense to me, since many Frontier passengers don’t have carry-ons (given the cost), so space isn’t an issue
  • The crew didn’t collect trash until the very end of the flight, so for most of the flight items just sat on our tray tables
  • The crew seemed rather indifferent, which to be honest I can’t blame them for, given what they have to deal with; during deplaning one of the flight attendants was even standing with his back to passengers, texting on his phone

Frontier Airlines punctuality

To Frontier’s credit, the flight was nearly on-time, which is noteworthy in the summer of 2022. What I was most impressed by is that our checked bags arrived within 20 minutes of our flight’s arrival.

Bottom line

On the plus side, Frontier Airlines Stretch seats offer a good amount of legroom, and we ended up with an empty middle seat. Furthermore, the flight was punctual, and the checked bags arrived quickly.

That being said, I don’t have any interest in flying Frontier Airlines again. The airline doesn’t have any inflight entertainment, the cabins are in rough shape, and the general situation in the cabin was just a disaster. At least that was my one and only experience on the airline.

To be clear, this isn’t anything against ultra low cost carriers, as I think they are really important to the US airline industry. However, I’d far prefer to fly Spirit Airlines, which offers the Big Front Seat and high-speed Wi-Fi. To me that’s a materially different experience.

Unless something changes or there’s an emergency that requires me to fly with the airline, this was my first and last Frontier Airlines experience.

Conversations (39)
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  1. HG Guest

    Frontier flies directly to many destinations from our local airport. From our experience they are typically on time. The personnel are professional & courteous. If you don’t like it, don’t fly it. Think of it like a bus. This is not 1965. Air travel has changed.

  2. Morgan Diamond

    It's ironic. Because obviously Ben you rarely fly economy but when you do its always an ULCC/LCC like spirit, easy jet, Ryan air, jet star or frontier. Whereas myself I mostly fly economy and then business at times, but I always try avoid any LCC sometimes I can't but mostly its economy on full service airlines. It would be interesting to see a review of economy on a full service airline like E.G. Qatar just...

    It's ironic. Because obviously Ben you rarely fly economy but when you do its always an ULCC/LCC like spirit, easy jet, Ryan air, jet star or frontier. Whereas myself I mostly fly economy and then business at times, but I always try avoid any LCC sometimes I can't but mostly its economy on full service airlines. It would be interesting to see a review of economy on a full service airline like E.G. Qatar just for the fun of the review as one off also will give you a good base which to compare other experiences to.

  3. Niko_jas Guest

    Is the green turtle snack package so named because it comes with enough plastic wrapping to kill a dozen turtles!? Seems like a poor choice of name!

  4. Dean Fowles Guest

    Ironically, I got pulled into Frontier's Den with the Amex Platinum Card, and for a time, they were they only direct service into my hometown. Admittedly, it's not great but if you need a flight, and they have a flight then it's a closed case. If only every flight could be a QSuite!

  5. JohnHam Member

    I'd say Frontier's Recaro seats are slightly wore than Spirit's Accro seats.

  6. Ed walsh Guest

    Just flew Frontier from Punta Cana. The seats were so tight and packed cushioning that I was in pain for all the next day.

  7. PF Guest

    The two hour bag rule may be due to several things such as airport policy (do other airlines have this rule at ISP?), the (assumed) third-party company doing the ground handling , space constraints in the bag room or limited equipment and staff.

  8. J R Guest

    Since non stop flights are now a rarity, suck it up and be thankful.

  9. jon_isp New Member

    I've waited over a decade to finally see a review out of my home airport, and funny enough I was there the same day coming inbound.

  10. KingBob Guest

    Whenever you see those videos of fights at ticket counters & gate counters, it's always Spirit. I love Frontier and fly them often. When you can fly Orlando to San Diego for $17 each way (pre-covid), you go. You spoke of the cost of your F9 tickets with their Bundle but you didn't say what it would have cost on the mainline carriers but I'm guessing, last minute as you booked this, $hundreds more.

  11. Christie salazar Guest

    We were told if you had a c.c with frontier ,you didn't pay for suitcase but we did.

  12. chasgoose Guest

    Re the 2 hour luggage check-in policy, I do think its largely because Frontier has issues with getting the right bags on the right planes at certain airports, due to a combination of inexperienced crews and less than helpful Frontier. Notably, the small airports near big cities that had never seen scheduled flights before (so not the Allegiant model of flying to smaller places that have had service, but like using Trenton, or formerly Wilmington,...

    Re the 2 hour luggage check-in policy, I do think its largely because Frontier has issues with getting the right bags on the right planes at certain airports, due to a combination of inexperienced crews and less than helpful Frontier. Notably, the small airports near big cities that had never seen scheduled flights before (so not the Allegiant model of flying to smaller places that have had service, but like using Trenton, or formerly Wilmington, DE instead of PHL).

    Anecdotally, I was once flying back to Philly from Chicago into Trenton, NJ on F9 (a little further to Center City, but its a wash with how much longer it takes to get out of PHL) on a Sunday afternoon and I overheard that a lot of the passengers on this flight were dealing with missing luggage issues from their Friday flight into ORD (they do a TTN-ORD service departing from TTN on Friday and returning on Sunday with no flights in between, I had flown to ORD on AA from PHL). Apparently all of the bags from the TTN-ORD flight had been put on the TTN-FLL flight that departed around the same time and vice versa.

    I was sort of shocked, but when I landed in Trenton, I could see how that happened. Based on a quick look at F9 schedules, at most of these smaller airports, F9 usually banks all flights for the day out of that airport for a morning and afternoon session to minimize costs. As a result, these airports are very busy at times when F9 is operating, despite maybe having one gate that is basically a door leading to the tarmac where, at most, 3 planes can fit. I think it was either poor communication/nearly identical planes or that Frontier's aging fleet which leads them to cancel flights last minute.

    Either way, I agree with you that Frontier is even worse than Spirit. I only fly them if the price is significantly lower (after adding "The Works") than the alternatives.

    1. Eric Guest

      Yeah, a few things to unpack (no pun intended) here. @ ⬆️ & Ben.
      Ben pays for several upgrades, including bags, than rips on the shaming sign about pax. unwilling to pony up a little xtra $ for bag check to speedily expedite departure ?! Every little tactic as these, ensures one less bug to hold up departure. ZERO problem w shaming. Then he praises F9’s legroom as on par w the major domestics,...

      Yeah, a few things to unpack (no pun intended) here. @ ⬆️ & Ben.
      Ben pays for several upgrades, including bags, than rips on the shaming sign about pax. unwilling to pony up a little xtra $ for bag check to speedily expedite departure ?! Every little tactic as these, ensures one less bug to hold up departure. ZERO problem w shaming. Then he praises F9’s legroom as on par w the major domestics, than dings it in the next paragraph . Which is it ?? F9 has the youngest fleet of American carriers. SWA does NOT have charging ports @ their seats. Spirit seats are manufactured by the same company as Frontier, & both are equally terrible. ZERO difference. Lastly, it’s common knowledge w any frequent flyer (who pays attention) that bag check closes/ends 45 min. prior to departure. Has been w Frontier for decades. And speaking of NK (Spirit) just wait until the JB/NK merger goes through. We pax. will have one less ULCC pricing point to choose from. And you’ll be getting f’D w jacked up JetBlue fare hikes, as they burn the entire NK low cost//no frills model to the ground. Not to mention ALL the NK employees who’ll be bounced out of employment.

  13. Mike Weaver Guest

    First class travel has spoiled you. We mortal travelers get to have this fun on the regular

  14. Brad Guest

    I am a DL F/J and prem Y kinda guy. My boyfriend loves a deal. Several years ago he decided we were going from TPA to LAS on Frontier. O M G ! yeah. The most uncomfortable experience I have ever had in the air. Around MSY he ( the cheap one ) moaned " Is it over yet ? ". To be fair though, on both flights our crew was a cut above my crew experiences with AA. Never again on Frontier. Life's too short for that.

  15. R Zimmerman Guest

    We fly from Islip and ft Myers. The first time we applied for their credit card. I made a reservation for November and just found out that the flight is cancelled and they will not be flying that way anymore. What do I do with those miles now ??

  16. Eskimo Guest

    "The agent lifted our bags to “eyeball” the weight, as he explained."

    Does this actually violate some safety rule consider weigh & balance issue?

    And isn't ancillary revenue, aka bag fees, one of their main source of income?
    The penalty of going 2lbs above 40lbs is huge.

    Maybe why Spirit couldn't merge with Frontier. As bad as they are trying, Frontier is even worse than what Spirit can handle it.

    1. Eric Guest

      No, Spirit’s worse. And just wait until the JetBlue/Spirt merger passes. You’ll have one less ULCC carrier to choose from. Not to mention ALL the NK (Spirit) employees Out O Work ….

  17. Bob Guest

    So Spirit is finally more close to JetBlue then? :-)))

  18. Lynne Walsh Guest

    Everything you reported was spot on! Let me add that at some hubs Frontier has no gates so if a bigger airline lands and needs their gate Frontier is pushed out and delayed hours…sometimes 4 hours like in AUS(Tex). Avoid this Airline at all costs.

    1. Eric Guest

      Lynne that’s factual INCORRECT.

      Hubs, like DEN, Frontier’s main hub/base have dedicated gates that belong STRICTLY to them. The same w United in DEN, their biggest hub, AA @ DFW, DL @ ATL.
      Airlines pay airports for slots aka. boarding gates. There called Usery fees & part of the PFC’s (Passenger Facility Charges.) Negotiated, well in advance between airports & airlines. Frontier, like EVERY carrier, DOES NOT get booted off a gate, when...

      Lynne that’s factual INCORRECT.

      Hubs, like DEN, Frontier’s main hub/base have dedicated gates that belong STRICTLY to them. The same w United in DEN, their biggest hub, AA @ DFW, DL @ ATL.
      Airlines pay airports for slots aka. boarding gates. There called Usery fees & part of the PFC’s (Passenger Facility Charges.) Negotiated, well in advance between airports & airlines. Frontier, like EVERY carrier, DOES NOT get booted off a gate, when a UA, DL, SWA, Spirt, JetBlue, DL Allegiant or ANY carrier for that matter pulls into the airport.

  19. Jimmy’s Travel Report Gold

    @Lucky - When I saw ISP I thought “humm, were they in the Hamptons?” And you were. I’d be curious about your take on the Hamptons as a destination. I have a friend in the Amagansett area, and I usually get out there a couple times a year. Personally I really enjoy it. Additionally I’ve been wanting to either try or see a write up on Breeze, and they also fly out of ISP.

    BTW...

    @Lucky - When I saw ISP I thought “humm, were they in the Hamptons?” And you were. I’d be curious about your take on the Hamptons as a destination. I have a friend in the Amagansett area, and I usually get out there a couple times a year. Personally I really enjoy it. Additionally I’ve been wanting to either try or see a write up on Breeze, and they also fly out of ISP.

    BTW if there ever was a flight you should put on your Bose headphones and wait 2.5 hours to use the restroom, that was it. Appreciate you taking one for the team on this review.

  20. West Coast Flyer Guest

    Say what you will about Frontier, but that's one of the better beer selections I've seen on any of the menus published here.

    1. Austin Guest

      100%! I am surprised why most airlines (US or otherwise) never have any decent beer. It's usually some Anheuser-Busch product, and they think Goose Island is premium. Voodoo is a pretty good beer, as is Fat Tire.

    2. Steve Diamond

      Because people who drink reguluarly on a plane dont care about a "craft" beer. Plus its cheaper so higher margins and easier to procure at every airport. No incentive to carry premium beer there arent enough people like you that might buy a nicer beer versus the higher level of margins on the bud lights.

  21. George Romey Guest

    As bad as the legacies are I would have taken Amtrak before Frontier. I've heard horror stories and some of the passengers from what I'm told must live in a cave.

  22. CXTraveller New Member

    I've flown Frontier a few times before the pandemic, and I found the seats thin and not very comfortable (harder feel, thin pad). For 2 hr or less, I am okay with that, especially when they are much cheaper than Southwest out of Nashville to Florida. I also noticed that they are not really enforcing the personal item size that much. I've seen plenty of people with backpacks that obviously bigger than their personal item...

    I've flown Frontier a few times before the pandemic, and I found the seats thin and not very comfortable (harder feel, thin pad). For 2 hr or less, I am okay with that, especially when they are much cheaper than Southwest out of Nashville to Florida. I also noticed that they are not really enforcing the personal item size that much. I've seen plenty of people with backpacks that obviously bigger than their personal item size limit without getting questioned by gate agents or FA's. Since then, I've flown Spirit out of Houston, and the Big Front Seat is significantly better - it is like a sofa...even without the recline, it's still a very good seat. However, Spirit's check-in at the airport usually has very long lines from my experience (mainly for checking bags, the two times that I had to check bags, very long lines).

  23. Duck Ling Guest

    I think it's about managing expectations. And, let's be honest....you rarely fly economy on a full service carrier, let alone an ultra LCC.

    If the fare is reasonable, the flight is non stop and the airline is generally punctual, I can forgive pretty much everything else on a flight of up to two hours. Which is why I typically use Ryanair out of the city in europe I live in. They are the most punctual....

    I think it's about managing expectations. And, let's be honest....you rarely fly economy on a full service carrier, let alone an ultra LCC.

    If the fare is reasonable, the flight is non stop and the airline is generally punctual, I can forgive pretty much everything else on a flight of up to two hours. Which is why I typically use Ryanair out of the city in europe I live in. They are the most punctual. They have the fewest cancellations. And despite the onboard short-comings, I know what i'm going to get. There's no fluff in their advertising - you're paying for a seat to get from A to B in minimal comfort and nothing else.

    In terms of wifi and IFE that was absolutely your bad in not downloading content. It is easy to see on the airlines website what they have onboard (or lack thereof).

  24. SubwayNut Guest

    What Credit Card did you use to pay for your onboard snacks?

    I flew Sprit Big Front Seat last weekend and we got a "Share Pair" of two soft drinks and a cheese tray (that looks exactly same as the one on Frontier and we were a little disappointed with) for $14, their prices are nearly but not quite the same on Spirit as Frontier (Soft Drinks and Water are $3.50). I used my AMEX...

    What Credit Card did you use to pay for your onboard snacks?

    I flew Sprit Big Front Seat last weekend and we got a "Share Pair" of two soft drinks and a cheese tray (that looks exactly same as the one on Frontier and we were a little disappointed with) for $14, their prices are nearly but not quite the same on Spirit as Frontier (Soft Drinks and Water are $3.50). I used my AMEX Platinum card assuming I would get 5x the points since it was a purchase through an Airline and it rang up as "SPIRIT AIRLINES ONBOARD RETAIL" only earning 1x point.

    1. GroundBound Guest

      Spirit's onboard product is owned/controlled/supplied by LSG (the aircraft caterers). So they set the menu, price, when/where aircraft are catered, actually own the point of sale devices the crews use, etc. They collect the money and Spirit makes some sort of revenue share (there are some things built in like comps for UMs and the crew can consume sodas/snacks as long as they log it).

  25. JB Guest

    My first and only flight on Frontier so far was a year ago (in the first week of August 2021) from Miami to Atlanta, and my flight was delayed by an hour, a girl was being dresscoded by the gate agent which turned into an interesting scene (straight out of the news we saw daily that time of last year), and a lady self upgraded herself into an extra legroom seat during boarding without paying...

    My first and only flight on Frontier so far was a year ago (in the first week of August 2021) from Miami to Atlanta, and my flight was delayed by an hour, a girl was being dresscoded by the gate agent which turned into an interesting scene (straight out of the news we saw daily that time of last year), and a lady self upgraded herself into an extra legroom seat during boarding without paying which slightly delayed the flight (but she moved back when everyone on the plane complained at her). I had a middle seat in the 20th row and I bought my ticket last minute for $140 (which is expensive for a one hour FR flight). It was an interesting experience, one I will remember for a while.

    This was that week when Spirit was having horrible reliability issues with the majority of their flights being canceled, so AA and DL's flights were fully booked on that route.

  26. tipsyinmadras Gold

    Oof, Long Island to Tampa - might as well call it the Jenna Maroney Express

  27. Steve Diamond

    I have always liked Spirit and its clear how much better Spirit is when you are forced to fly frontier. Im going to miss the big front seats, its one of the best deals in travel.

  28. Alonzo Diamond

    Lots of complaints for a direct 2.5 hour flight. Frontier ain't that bad, but you get what you pay for. It's not like AA is loads better. A eye mask and Bose headphones would have made this review pretty non existent.

  29. Legend717 Guest

    I agree that Frontier is pretty rough; what I cannot understand is your continued near-gushing over Spirit.
    Spirit is virtually identical in wretchedness. Including... calibre of passenger.
    I just cannot support the notion that Spirit is in any material way superior to Frontier. Both rank one notch below Greyhound, because on a bus, at least you can pull over when the passengers erupt in a fistfight, or start snorting coke off of meal trays.

  30. JC Guest

    I think you had a one off bad experience. I am an AA exec Platinum and regularly fly in first and business class and from Philly to Tampa Frontier was far superior to American in economy. The seats were comfortable for the short flight, the flight attendants were professional, and the passengers were all friendly and clean and the bathroom was not filthy. This was a nighttime flight. My mother who never had flown on...

    I think you had a one off bad experience. I am an AA exec Platinum and regularly fly in first and business class and from Philly to Tampa Frontier was far superior to American in economy. The seats were comfortable for the short flight, the flight attendants were professional, and the passengers were all friendly and clean and the bathroom was not filthy. This was a nighttime flight. My mother who never had flown on Frontier before after the flight said, I'm not sure why we always fly American and pay more since Frontier is much less expensive and offers a better product. She is also a Platinum Pro.

    1. Jerry Diamond

      I'm not saying you're wrong, but as an EXP you get MCE seats, free drinks, a free snack, three checked bags, a carry-on, and priority boarding. The plane also has WiFi and streaming entertainment. I don't really understand how Frontier could be better. Perhaps you really, really like BuzzBalls.

  31. RetiredATLATC Diamond

    Haven't even read the review yet, but when the header has only 2-stars, I know I'm in for a treat.

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Jimmy’s Travel Report Gold

@Lucky - When I saw ISP I thought “humm, were they in the Hamptons?” And you were. I’d be curious about your take on the Hamptons as a destination. I have a friend in the Amagansett area, and I usually get out there a couple times a year. Personally I really enjoy it. Additionally I’ve been wanting to either try or see a write up on Breeze, and they also fly out of ISP. BTW if there ever was a flight you should put on your Bose headphones and wait 2.5 hours to use the restroom, that was it. Appreciate you taking one for the team on this review.

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Jerry Diamond

I'm not saying you're wrong, but as an EXP you get MCE seats, free drinks, a free snack, three checked bags, a carry-on, and priority boarding. The plane also has WiFi and streaming entertainment. I don't really understand how Frontier could be better. Perhaps you really, really like BuzzBalls.

3
Duck Ling Guest

I think it's about managing expectations. And, let's be honest....you rarely fly economy on a full service carrier, let alone an ultra LCC. If the fare is reasonable, the flight is non stop and the airline is generally punctual, I can forgive pretty much everything else on a flight of up to two hours. Which is why I typically use Ryanair out of the city in europe I live in. They are the most punctual. They have the fewest cancellations. And despite the onboard short-comings, I know what i'm going to get. There's no fluff in their advertising - you're paying for a seat to get from A to B in minimal comfort and nothing else. In terms of wifi and IFE that was absolutely your bad in not downloading content. It is easy to see on the airlines website what they have onboard (or lack thereof).

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