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Spirit Airlines: A Major Airline of the United States

Flying with Spirit Airlines

The origins of the company go back to 1964, when it was founded as Clipper Trucking Company. In 1980, they started an airline service called Charter One. Since 1992, the company has been known as Spirit Airlines and has expanded their list of destinations to 52, spanning the US, Caribbean, Central America and South America. Its headquarters is in Ft. Lauderdale, and its other top hub airports are in Las Vegas, Dallas, Chicago and Detroit. Spirit Airlines became an ultra low cost carrier in 2007. They used an innovative plan to reduce costs by charging for optional services such as baggage and drinks or their Big Front Seat. The Big Front Seat option is Spirit's alternative to business class or first class, neither of which they offer. They also display advertising throughout their airplanes to generate ad revenue, including on tray tables, seatback inserts and overhead bins. Spirit uses only Airbuses in its fleet of planes. It has 29 Airbus A319–100s, which seat 145 passengers. Spirit also uses 26 Airbus A320–200s with a capacity of 178. Their two Airbus A321–200s hold 218 passengers apiece.

Online Check-In

Spirit Airlines allows and encourages online check–in beginning 24 hours before the scheduled departure time of the flight. Checking in online with Spirit will often save the passenger money on baggage fees, if they choose to purchase their bags at that time. Online check–in also allows the passenger to use the Fast Bag Drop for quicker service at the airport. It is also possible to check in at the airport using either automated kiosks, which save money, or at the check–in counter. Passengers are charged a small fee to print out a boarding pass in the airport at this point. Spirit recommends that passengers arrive at the airport two hours before their domestic flight is scheduled to depart, or three hours before the scheduled departure time of international flights. Because of Transport Security Administration (TSA) screening requirements, bags must be checked a minimum of 30 minutes before the flight, or 60 minutes before flights to international destinations. In several major US cities a minimum of 45 minutes is required. These cities are Dallas, Denver, Ft. Lauderdale, Atlanta, Las Vegas, Orlando, Los Angeles and San Juan, Puerto Rico. The Spirit Airlines website provides flight status updates.

Boarding Information

Passengers who do not have a boarding pass at least 30 minutes before departure may lose their reservation. Loss of reservation can also occur if a passenger is not at the gate 15 minutes before takeoff.

Frequent Flyer Information – FREE SPIRIT

FREE SPIRIT is the name of Spirit Airlines' frequent flyer program. Free registration for the program is available via the airline's website. After joining, members will earn miles based on the cost of flights they purchase. The Spirit World Mastercard is another way to earn miles for Spirit Airlines. The miles can be redeemed for award travel. Members also have the option to make use of their FREE SPIRIT miles by exchanging them for magazine subscriptions or online games and contests. Being a FREE SPIRIT member also makes it easier to make reservations and manage bookings.

Hand Baggage Allowance

Spirit uses what they call their Bare Fare to keep their base prices as low as possible. Those who travel light will benefit the most from this policy, but it allows each customer to personalize their trip. Each passenger is permitted to carry on one free personal item. The item must be able to fit in a box with the dimensions of 16 x 14 x 12 inches (40 x 35 x 30 cm) including handles and wheels. This usually means only a small backpack or purse will be free to carry–on. An additional carry–on bag that can fit under the airplane seat or in the overhead bins requires a service charge and should be a maximum of 22 x 18 x 10 inches (56 x 46 x 25 cm) in size. This fee changes depending on when you reserve the carry–on privilege. The base price is charged if purchased during online booking or before online check–in. The price goes up slightly if a carry–on bag allowance is reserved during online check–in. Members of Spirit's $9 Fare Club receive a reduction on these charges. Passengers who wait until the airport to select the carry–on option will be subject to a higher charge, which rises again if carry–on luggage is booked at the gate. These last two prices are not subject to a $9 Fare Club discount.

Checked Baggage Allowance

Checked bags are also charged differently according to when the request is made by the customer. During online booking or before online check–in, the first checked bag is charged at the base price, while during online check–in the fee rises. The fee rises again if checked bags are booked at the airport or at the gate. The service charge for second checked bags has a higher fee structure, which similarly varies according to time of purchase. Third, fourth and fifth checked bags also have higher service charges. Spirit Airlines also charges additional fees for baggage items that exceed certain weight or size limits. Bags that weigh 41 – 50 lbs (18 – 23 kg) are subject to a base service charge, which increases for baggage in the 51 – 70 lbs (23 – 32 kg) range and again for anything that weighs between 71 – 99 lbs (32 – 45 kg). The first fee level for oversized baggage is for checking an item with a combined linear measurement greater than 62 linear inches (158 cm). For baggage that exceeds 80 linear inches (203 cm), a higher fee is charged. Certain items of sporting equipment have separate or specific fee structures. Regulations can vary from item to item; for instance, two surf boards can be checked together in one bag for the same price. Golf clubs, skis and snowboards are priced the same as checked bags and overweight charges may apply.

- Spirit Airfare has a stripped down fare to suit every traveler’s budget.
- Liberty to choose what you need and make an addition as per your requirement.
- Gives you travel insurance to choose from that covers all your travel investments
- Has deluxe leather seats to maximize comfort and is considered a fuel-efficient air carrier
- You will be able to experience easy online booking and check-in facility

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