Spirit Airlines is an ultra low-cost carrier (I’ll address that shortly) that mostly flies to and from secondary airports like Latrobe (40 minutes away from Pittsburgh) to Fort Lauderdale (an hour from Miami). But Spirit has changed their model slightly by moving into bigger airports like Pittsburgh International, Dallas Fort Worth and Chicago O’Hare instead of cheaper but smaller alternative airports.
New Flights, Great Deals
When Spirit moves into a new market they offer 6-10 new routes and Pittsburgh was no exception. Check out this post about their new routes out of PIT. To fill seats on those new routes and introduce new customers to their product they offer incredibly inexpensive flights and deliver a tremendous value for customers.
Spirit added Pittsburgh-Las Vegas flights which are not new to the area, both Frontier and Southwest fly them direct and every other carrier offers the route with connections. But the flights are so cheap that it might be less expensive to fly to Vegas for the weekend than taking the family out for dinner. Right now, space is wide open for $83 round trip.
But wait, there’s more. When you click-through to make your purchase (if using Google.com/flights) you find a new screen whereby Google will send your information on to Spirit for you, and now the price drops to just $20 each way including taxes!
Some Important Notes
All airlines except Southwest charge checked luggage fees, but Spirit, Frontier, and Allegiant also charge you to carry on anything more than a purse or a small backpack so you won’t be able to dodge the fees by loading up your carry-on.
That being said, baggage fees on Spirit are only $32 each way for these flights. The makes the total roundtrip with a checked bag just $102 roundtrip.
Southwest Is Gouging You
Yes but Southwest has free checked bags and I hate paying baggage fees. Ok, but they are using that line to rip you off! Even if you checked two bags in both directions for a total added cost of $128 plus your airfare at $40 you would still come in well under half price from the Southwest fare.
Other Carriers Charge You The Same Spirit Fees
United, American and Delta recently added “Basic Economy” fares meaning that you are just buying the seat even when flying United. Not all of their tickets are this way, but you should watch out for them. Not only that, the United fare which has all of the same restrictions as those of the Spirit fare, with United you would have to make a connection instead of Spirit’s direct route.
Have you ever booked a flight across the country for just $40 roundtrip before?