New York – Spirit Airlines Raises Online Booking Fee

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    New York – Passengers on Spirit Airlines Inc. now face nearly $34 in fees just to buy their tickets online. The only way most customers can avoid the fee is to head to the airport and wait on line to see a ticket agent there.

    The no-frills airline advertises base fares as low as $9 but then charges passengers for everything from placing a carry-on bag in the overhead bin to having a glass of water onboard. In January it plans to start charging $5 for each boarding pass a ticket agent prints.

    “It’s one of the sneakiest fees in the industry,” said George Hobica, founder of Airfarewatchdog. He notes that Spirit lists the generic-sounding “passenger usage fee” along with the government-imposed taxes and fees. “It’s very disingenuous. It does look like some unavoidable fee.”

    On Nov. 8 the Miramar-Fla. company increased the online fee for domestic passengers from $8.99 each way to $16.99, according to spokeswoman Misty Pinson. The international fee fell $2 each way to $16.99.

    The passenger usage fee is charged to anyone buying tickets online, which is the bulk of Spirit’s sales. The fee can be avoided by buying a ticket at the airport. It is also not charged on flights departing from Colombia or Panama.

    The only other U.S. airline to charge such a fee is Allegiant Travel Company. Passengers there face a fee of $17 roundtrip to book a ticket online.

    Spirit’s booking fee could be 40 percent or more of a ticket’s total price. For instance a $14 fare each way between Detroit and New York included $21.40 in federal taxes and security fees and the $33.98 usage fee.

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    5 COMMENTS

    1. why would any one EVER fly spirit, they are the worst airline possible. (and one of the more expensive one when u add all the rediculous fees (there are about 20 different fees)

      • So boycott Spirit Airlines. You live in north America, and there is no shortage of other carriers to get you from A to B without having to pay excessive extra charges.

        BTW, the word is rIdiculous, and not rEdiculous!

    2. “a $14 fare each way between Detroit and New York included $21.40 in federal taxes and security fees and the $33.98 usage fee. “

      So the breakdown is a bit bizarre, but all told, a $69.38 fare for that flight seems pretty reasonable. Of course, this is all done to make them look more competitive, so it’s a shtickle false advertising, because they will advertise $9, not $69.38.

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