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COVID-19 continues to affect airline travel around the world. See how Frontier Airlines is handling the coronavirus pandemic.

When it comes to cheap flights, Frontier Airlines typically has some of the most affordable fares you’ll find.

If you’re thinking about flying Frontier, we’re going to tell you everything you need to know, including why the carrier’s fares are so cheap and the many fees that can be added to your ticket.

Team Clark has been researching the policies and amenities of the major airlines so that you can make an informed decision about the airline you choose to fly.

Frontier Airlines: What You Need To Know

Frontier is a Denver, Colorado-based airline known as an ultra-low cost carrier in the industry.

Frontier is the ninth-largest airline in the country when it comes to market share.

Let’s get into some things you should know about Frontier before you fly.

Frontier Airlines: Table of Contents

1. Where Does Frontier Fly?

Frontier operates flights to more than 100 destinations throughout the United States and several dozen cities abroad including Canada, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica and Mexico.

Here are some of Frontier’s popular U.S. destinations:

  • Atlanta
  • Chicago
  • Cincinnati
  • Cleveland
  • Denver
  • Philadelphia

See Frontier’s route map here.

2. How Safe Is Frontier Airlines?

Frontier hasn’t had a fatal plane crash in its quarter-century of existence.

There is no official ranking of airlines according to safety, but the website included Frontier on its 2021 list of the Top 10 Safest Low-Cost Airlines.

3. How Is Frontier Able To Charge Such Cheap Fares?

When you see those super-cheap online deals that Frontier advertises, remember that those are base prices for one-way fares.

Frontier’s low fares are a result of its no-frills base prices. When you book a flight, Frontier gives you three fare options:

  • Customized (unbundled option): This fare lets you buy your travel options individually. The base ticket price may be low, but you’ll have to pay extra for things many other airlines include in their fares.
  • “The Perks” (bundled option): carries a price exemption on a carry-on bag and checked bag.
  • The Works (bundled option): carries a price exemption on a carry-on bag and checked bag. It also gives you more flexibility.

More on fees in a moment, but first let’s look at a comparison of Frontier’s two fare bundling options.

Because you get flexibility on changing your ticket, The Works fare costs more than the Perks bundle but, depending on your needs, may end up being the better deal.

Things to know before you fly Frontier Airlines

Regardless of what fare you choose, if you want to book your flight(s) by phone instead of online, there’s a $25 per ticket fee.

Let’s talk about other fees on Frontier.

4. What Are Frontier’s Change Fees?

Here’s a summary of Frontier’s change fee policy as of April 2021. It applies to regular (customized) bookings and also to The Perks bundles:

  • If you change your flight 60 or more days in advance of your scheduled departure, you will pay $0 in change fees.
  • If you make changes to your flight between seven and 59 days in advance, you pay $39.
  • If you make changes six days or less before departure, you pay $59.
  • Many airlines continue to adjust their ticket change policies because of the COVID-19 pandemic. So check Frontier’s website here for the latest details.
  • Also note that, if you make a change to your ticket by phone instead of online, you’ll pay a $25 fee.

5. Does Frontier Charge for Baggage?

Unless you’re buying a bundled fare, Frontier charges for checking bags but allows you to board with one free “personal item,” as long as it’s no larger than 14 inches tall, 18 inches wide and 8 inches long.

Unlike most carriers, Frontier also charges for a carry-on bag (Again, you can get around this if you opt for either The Perks or The Works).

Frontier says the price for bringing a carry-on bag varies based on when you pay for that fee. (Hint: the longer you wait, the more you’ll pay.)

When I recently went through the flight-booking process for a one-way domestic trip on Frontier, the baggage fees were:

  • $0 for a personal item
  • $42 for a carry-on bag
  • $40 for a checked bag

See Frontier’s baggage policy for further details.

6. Does Frontier Charge for Seating Assignments?

During booking, Frontier charges for seat assignments unless you’ve purchased a bundled fare via The Works or The Perks.

If you don’t pay to select a seat at the time of booking, Frontier will select one for you for free at the time of check-in (Don’t bet on sitting next to family).

There are two categories of seats: Standard and Stretch. Here are the seat assignment prices for a one-way flight, which vary according to location on the plane:

  • Standard Seating: These seats cost $17-$55.
  • Stretch Seating: These seats give you 5-7 extra inches of legroom and cost $35-$70.

7. How Do Frontier Customers View the Airline?

Frontier ranked next to last in the American Customer Satisfaction Index report released in December 2020:

Team Clark’s Sally McDonald flew Frontier from Atlanta to San Juan, Puerto Rico. This is what she said about the experience:

“The best part: No delays! (In fact, both flights landed early.) The worst part: The fees! Our overall experience was good, and the fares are too cheap to pass up! When booking with a discount airline, we always factor the fees and extras into the ticket before we book to make sure we’re actually saving money. We also make sure we’re willing to sit in less-than-comfortable seats for the entire flight.”

What Is Frontier Airlines’ Customer Service Number?

Frontier Airlines’ customer service number is 801-401-9000. Here’s the best way to reach Frontier and other major airlines.

8. Is Frontier a Family-Friendly Airline?

If you’re flying as a family and choose to pay for seating assignments, Frontier may be a carrier to consider. Also, families with small children, take heart: When you’re traveling with a little one, a stroller and car seat can be checked free of charge.

If you join Frontier’s Discount Den program (details below), you can get access to the Kids Fly Free feature which lets one child (age 14 or under) fly for free for every qualifying adult Discount Den fare purchased.

As prices (for all airfares) change frequently, you should consider going through the exercise of pricing tickets for multiple passengers both at the standard and Discount Den fares. There’s no guarantee the Discount Den fare will always be a better deal.

9. How To Save on Frontier Airlines

Team Clark wants you to cut your travel costs the next time you fly. Here are some ways to save money on Frontier Airlines:

Avoid Baggage Fees

If you can pack light, that’s the #1 way to save money on Frontier Airlines.

Money expert Clark Howard has been known to layer his clothing just to avoid baggage fees.

We don’t expect you to go to that extreme. But if you must incur bag fees, pay online to avoid the $25 phone fee.

Use Promo Codes

When you book a flight at, make sure you use the promo code associated with the flight. You can find it near the airfare price online.

An example of a promo code that allows you to save 25% on a Frontier flight would be “SAVE25.”

Join the Discount Den Program

If you fly often, do the math to see if it’s worth it for you to sign up for the Discount Den program.

Discount Den costs $59.99 a year and gives you:

  • Exclusive access to discounted fares
  • Ability to put up to six people on one reservation
  • Access to Kids Fly Free flights

Have you flown Frontier Airlines? Tell Team Clark about your flying experience in the comments below!

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Five things to know when flying Frontier Airlines on the cheap

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However, when a friend's parents invited me to go on vacation to Florida with them (and pay for my flight), I was curious to see what I would get from the ultra low-cost carrier.

Earlier this year I flew Frontier roundtrip between San Francisco (SFO) and Orlando (MCO) nonstop and it wasn't as bad as some people think.

As a matter of fact, I would definitely fly Frontier again knowing these five things:

1. Paying extra for a seat is not necessary

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When booking a Frontier flight, the airline greatly encourages customers to choose and pay for seats for an extra fee. If you select seats during the initial booking, the fee starts at $17 for a standard seat and $35 for "stretch" seating (economy class seats near the front of the plane with more legroom.) Nerdwallet has a good rundown of Frontier fees here.

But, if you're okay with sitting anywhere, you don't have to pay at all. If customers don't choose to pay for seats by the end of check-in, Frontier automatically assigns them seats for free. They even try to keep the travel party together when possible.

It's a bit of a gamble, but waiting for Frontier to assign free seats can sometimes mean getting a better seat than those who have paid. Huh? Well, it seems that a lot of people (most?) are not willing to pay more for extra "stretch" legroom, which means that a flight can end up with several "stretch" seats still available by the time check-in starts.

My friend and I tested our luck by checking in at the airport kiosk and being assigned to seats at the desk. We didn't get those roomy stretch seats, but ended up with seats in row 9 for free while our other travel companions (who paid extra when making their reservation) had to sit back in row 28. As on most airlines, standard seats near the front of the plane cost more than the ones in the back, so we got a decent deal.

On our return trip, we chose to check in online about 20 hours before our departure. We ended up with standard seats closer to the back of the plane, but we still got to sit together without paying the seat fee.

Flights were 100% full in both directions.

See Frontier Airlines route map here.

2. Carry-on fees can be avoided

Frontier is one of the few airlines that charge a fee for carry on bags. If you're traveling light, you can probably avoid paying Frontier's hefty carry-on baggage fee by bringing a "personal item" instead.

If you do bring a full-sized carry on (10" x 16" x 24") the bag fee varies based on the route you're flying, your date of travel, and when you buy your baggage allowance. The cost also depends on whether you purchased your baggage allowance during the initial booking or later, during online check-in or later still, at the gate. It's sufficiently complicated that Frontier provides a calculator here. 

I thought these fees were pretty expensive and knew immediately that I would not pay it. Instead, I decided to bring on the biggest bag that would qualify as my free personal item. Measurements for a personal item on Frontier are 8" x 18" x 14". Collectively, this is only 10 inches less than the maximum measurements for a carry-on bag.

Frontier suggests that personal items are typically small purses or neck pillows, but I knew that I could make my personal item function as my carry on. I took out my old corduroy Jansport backpack that I always travel with, stuffed it, and measured. It was perfect, just half an inch short of the maximum measurements for a personal item.

When I boarded the plane, I carried on my backpack for free. It contained my laptop, charger, a battery pack, a change of clothes, tons of snacks, and my small purse (stuffed with all of the things I usually carry). This is what I carry on for most flights, so I was glad that I didn't need to change my routine or pay extra to bring my backpack on Frontier.

3. Bring your own snacks

Water is the only food or beverage item that Frontier offers for free. There are no complimentary snacks or sodas. Just water. I didn't know this for certain ahead of time, but I knew there wouldn't be a hot meal service so I brought on a lot of snacks.

If you want to purchase snacks on board, be prepared to pay: Frontier offers a variety such as Chex Mix, Almond M&M's, and Pringles for $2.99 each. They also offer soft drinks, juices, and mixers for the same price. Wine, beer, and spirits are available for $7.99. (Due to the pandemic, Frontier is currently only providing limited beverage service upon request. No food is available for purchase.) 

Frontier typically offers several snack and drink bundles for passengers who really want to enjoy the snack service. These bundles offer a little bit of savings if you want to buy more than just a single snack and cater more towards families or passengers flying with a companion.

One of the most indulgent bundles that offered big savings was the "double happy hour," which included four alcoholic beverages, two soft drinks or mixers, and two snacks for $29.99. Built for two, this bundle saved a total of $13.93. It's too soon to say whether Frontier will be bringing happy hour back.

I was surprised to find that they also had bundles for children. These seemed to be the most reasonably priced. The Kid Fun Pack was $3.99 and included a snack stick, Goldfish, Oreo Cookies, M&Ms and a trading card.

Flight attendants accept credit cards only for inflight purchases.

4. Be prepared to entertain yourself

Bring plenty of your own entertainment on long Frontier flights (ours was about six hours) and be prepared for difficulties if you're trying to pass the time by sleeping.

On the way to Orlando, we took a red-eye flight and I needed to sleep, but this wasn't the most comfortable flight for that. The seats did not recline (at all) and there wasn't enough room for me to lean forward and rest on the tray table, so I ended up awkwardly slouching in my middle seat. (Seat pitch on Frontier's Airbus planes is just 28 inches compared to the average of about 31 inches.) Nonetheless, I managed to sleep for most of the flight, but did not feel well rested when I woke up.

On the return, daytime flight to SFO sleep wasn't an option so I had to figure out how to entertain myself. Frontier doesn't offer any in-flight entertainment or wi-fi. I saw a few people try to use their laptops offline, but the tray table is tiny (see photo above) and it's so confining that most of them gave up.

Passengers around me seemed to have the most success with books or tablets for entertainment. Neither of my Frontier flights were particularly eventful and it would've been incredibly boring if I didn't have a book to read on my return flight.

5. You get what you pay for

Frontier may be an ultra low-cost carrier, but it is still a good airline option for me. I did some preparation ahead of time and got exactly what I expected out of my flights.

One thing that stood out the most about Frontier was that everyone I encountered gave me excellent customer service and did their best to make sure I was comfortable. Flight attendants were very nice and tried to accommodate as many passengers as they could.

I mention this because I've never seen so many passengers be confrontational with flight attendants as I did on this trip. It's not unusual to see brief disputes about seating or overhead bin space, but on Frontier I saw countless passengers expecting flight attendants to provide them with services that they did not pay for. This ranged from passengers wanting to trade for better seats to people who harassed them over the price of in-flight snacks.

After witnessing one of these uncomfortable incidents with a passenger prior to departure, I asked the flight attendant how she was doing. She smiled and told me honestly that she was tired and looking forward to resting after we landed. We joked around a little and she didn't burden me with her feelings, but I couldn't help but feel bad watching her do the safety demonstration with a strained smile.

It became apparent to me that a lot of people jump at cheap fares on Frontier without fully understanding what they're getting and what they're not. It's important for people to do their research before booking and make sure they're okay with what they're getting when buying a ticket. If Frontier doesn't seem like a good fit, it's probably worth it to spend a little more somewhere else to get the desired amenities.

I had a great experience with Frontier and would certainly fly with them again. I didn't pay for my ticket, but the cost of my roundtrip from San Francisco to Orlando was $434 (United's nonstop fares were closer to $600). I feel like I got more than what I expected without having to pay any extra fees. The crew members were nice, I felt safe on board, and we landed on time. That's all that really matters to me.


If you are looking for frontier airlines customer service reviews, simply check out our links below :

1. Frontier Airlines Flights and Reviews (with photos) – Tripadvisor
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6. Questions, Comments, Complaints | Frontier Airlines

Contact Us Today! Fill out our Form Our form is available 24/7. Fill it out today: Feedback & Concerns Form. Write Us Attn: Customer Relations Frontier Airlines

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