If you don’t live under a rock, there’s a good chance you’ve heard about Spirit Airlines, notoriously known for their not-so-amazing service. And if you’ve had to search for and book your own trips, there’s also a good chance you’ve seen their deceptively cheap flights. And if you’re anything like me *cough* perpetually broke *cough* then you’ve pondered on whether or not to book with Spirit. I mean, how bad could it possibly be, right?
I’ve flown with spirit several times and came to the conclusion that it is possible to get a fairly good deal flying with them: cheap and with a decent experience. The catch—because there is ALWAYS a catch with Spirit—is that there are certain conditions you have to meet to enjoy this fairly good deal.
And that’s why I’m here! Let me give you 6 rules of when it’s a good idea to book Spirit.
You don’t have a strict timeframe of when you have to be wherever you’re traveling to or when you have to be back.
Arguably the top reason people complain about Spirit is because of the delays and cancellations. If you’re wondering how terrible they are in this area, let me break it down for you. According to US Department of Transportation Bureau of Transportation Statistics, from January 2016 to August 2016, 28.34% of Spirit’s flights were delayed and 2.22% of flights were cancelled. These don’t seem like terrible numbers until you take into account that only 11.83% and 0.38% of Delta flights were delayed and cancelled, respectively. Going further, United Airlines only experienced 14.85% of delayed flights and 1.44% of cancelled flights. Compared to both of those airlines, Spirit clearly lags behind. From a personal perspective, let’s just say every flight I’ve been on with them has been delayed and my home girl spent another day in Puerto Rico when her flight was cancelled at the last minute.
You don’t have a lot of luggage
Oh girl. This is where Spirit hits ya with the “getcha getcha”. Spirit is known for their “Bare Fare” tickets, where the price you see offered gets you from point A to point B with a personal item (this is still deceptive because you have an extra charge added on when you choose your seat on the plane). DAS IT. So you thought you were about to bring your purse and a carry on item? Ha! Where other airlines will allow you a carry on item, like a small roller bag, Spirit charges. So if you’re only coming with a small bookbag, go for it!
You’re not taking a long flight
Spirit is notorious for having the least amount of legroom than any other airline (amazon society, just go ahead and take this as your cue to leave). I’m 5’9 and my knees were scraping the back of the seat in front of mine. Oh and reclining seats? Ain’t no reclining seats bih! Definitely doable for a 2 hour flight, anything more than that, um, na.
You can handle everything before you get to the airport
If you pay for your carry on/checked bag while you’re booking the ticket it can be relatively cheap, say $35. Pay for it during check in? A little more expensive. Pay for it at the reservation desk? A little more expensive. Bring your carry on luggage to the gate thinking you’re going to bring it on the plane? They’ll slap you with a $100 fee. Try to print your ticket at the airport? Extra charge. Feeling parched and want a little drank? Extra charge. Want some peanuts? Extra charge. Want to breathe? Extra charge (kidding, or am I?). Point being, make sure to pay for all of your bags ahead of time, pack your own snacks, and print your own ticket beforehand and you can cut down on a lot of extra costs.
You’re a reasonably patient and “go with the flow” type of person
Spirit is NOT for the impatient. So all ya’ll with quick tempers and impatient tendencies just go ahead and save your blood pressure the rise.
You’re not traveling on a Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday or Saturday
Haha I kid I kid.
Have any of you had personal experiences with Spirit? Let me know how it went in the comments below!