Ok so I have been getting the “Spirit sucks so much” face when I told people that I chose Spirit to fly to Costa Rica. Apparently, most people flying with Spirit airlines have had a bad experience for the simple reason that, well… Spirit charges you for everything. “If they could charge you for breathing, they would” said my boyfriend. Indeed, a few days before my departure I got an email saying that I had to check in online to avoid paying a $10 fee for them to print my boarding pass. Ok no problem… Only thing was, The system didn’t let me print my boarding pass. Hum… And when I called the customer service, the lady was very rude. Plus they charged for every single checked in bags and charged if you wanted to choose a seat. Ok so let’s say it was not a great start but I was determined not to pay for anything. So, when I got to the airport, I said that customer service said that since the system didnt let me check in, I wouldn’t have to pay anything. (Sometimes, lying is good). The guy seemed somewhat confused, then said “You didn’t need to pay anyway” oh! Ok… Welll.. Thank you then. I wondered why the website and email gave this information if it were not true. Anyways I was happy about this news. At the desk, I didn’t pay anything either because I had managed to fit everything in a medium sized bag (Gym bag size). I didn’t have any liquids except for a tiny bottle of perfume. I made sure my deodorant was a stick one and decided that I would get body lotion and toothpaste over there. I also had my little camera bag and a little backpack but that didn’t seem to cause any problem. So that was me leaving Haïti to fly to Fort Lauderdale for a layover. Layover (11hours) went well except that they sent me an email to tell me that my flight to Costa Rica would be an hour late. That didn’t bother me except the fact that well.. The plane was on time. No announcment, no special message at the gate. It was like the plane was never late but somehow I got the notification that it would. Another strange thing. The flight to Costa Rica went fine and I was able to return without any trouble.
Soooo… I would say that Spirit is only appropriate for certain types of travelers. If you are trying to save money and are willing to pack light, there is no problem with you booking with Spirit airlines. As there catch phrase says Less money more Go . Makes me think of the travel quote Pack lighter, go further. Flying with spirit airlines really did help me save money on my plane ticket purchase. In total I was able to save between 100-200 bucks! Since I was not planning on doing any shopping except for souvenirs, only having 1 travel bag didn’t bother me at all! I don’t regret at all. Only thing is, you need to be well prepared. So a few tips:
- Pack light and wise to avoid paying for checked in baggages
- Print your boarding pass if possible
- Always be at the gate on time even if they say the flight will be late
- Bring a snack because they don’t feed you
- Prepare yourself mentally for any seat
However, if you are traveling for a longer period of time or want to make big purchases overseas, I would recommend flying with another airline that allows a free checked in luggage. The phone customer service was crap but besides this, everything should be just fine if you don’t have to call. My understanding from there logos and marketing is that they are designed for light travelers so people who conplain about their service because nothing is free should pay a little more attention to marketing details 😉 As a matter of fact, in late 2014 the company completely changed its brand identity! The logo changed and everything from the bright yellow color to the fun drawings say: cheap and fun! Even though sometimes, we are ready to pay more for comfort, we gotta admit that there are situations where less is more!
Have you traveled with Spirit airlines? How was your experience?