Message to Spirit Airlines – Don’t insult our intelligence!

Message to Spirit Airlines – Don’t insult our intelligence!

Spirit Airlines is continuing it opposition to the new federal rules that require airlines to include taxes and fees in the fare prices the airlines advertise. While Southwest and Allegiant Airlines are also in the “House of Shame” with Spirit for opposing these pro consumer rules, Spirit has sunk to a new low while trying to argue that customers actually prefer Spirit’s approach of ‘offering’ low $9 fares which never include taxes or all of Spirit’s extra add-on fees.

Disingenuously, Spirit argues that the government is trying to hide the amount of taxes in its fares. Actually the intent of the rules is to ensure a consumer is aware of the total cost of all mandatory fees (imposed by the airlines itself) and government taxes/fees. While the total price must be prominently displayed, there is no regulation prohibiting Spirit for breaking out each individual charge/fee/tax.  Under the new federal regulations, consumers will be able to make an informed choice when selecting an airline. Non-mandatory fees such as baggage fees are not included, not even Spirit’s charge for carry-on bags.

According to Spirit’s logic, we are all dumb enough to prefer to purchase a $9 fare even though it will cost many times that amount. Spirit believes we would prefer to see their $9 fare and compare it with other airlines which are including all of their fees in their ads. Really???  Read the blogs about consumer discontent with Spirit and passenger frustration with a plethora of add-on fees they did not expect to pay.

I don’t doubt Spirits deceptive practices have generated sales, but I know a consumer wants to understand the complete cost of a ticket before they purchase it.

Come on Spirit, don’t insult our intelligence. Show us the real price of a ticket – that is not asking to much.

Other rules that are now in effect include:

1) A requirement that airlines disclose on your reservation how much it will cost to check bags.

2) You will have 24 hours to cancel a reservation after booking without a penalty, on any reservation made a week or more before the departure date.

3) Baggage fees cannot change when a passengers is flying on a code-share or alliance connection that begins or ends in the US.

4) Airlines must notify passengers at the gate of any delay of 30 minutes or more, or of cancellations/diversions.

5) Prices cannot be increased on bags or tickets after a passenger has paid for the ticket.

Claudineia Powell