With all the "unbundling" of economy airline fares that's happened his past year, there has been much debate over the best way to structure airfares. Should airlines continue to add on more fees for services that used to be free on top of the base airfare or should they just raise ticket prices and include all the services in one price? Up until now, the airlines have done the former, but late last week, Frontier Airlines debuted a new flexible structure called AirFairs that lets passengers choose how they'd prefer to pay for their air travel.
When booking coach fares, Frontier customers can choose between three pricing levels:
- Classic Plus: Tickets are fully refundable and changeable and include advanced seat assignments, priority boarding, two free checked bags, free DirecTV, a snack and a premium beverage, and a 150-percent frequent-flyer mileage credit.
- Classic: Tickets include advanced seat assignments, two free checked bags, free DirecTV, and a 125 percent frequent flyer mileage credit. Change fees are reduced to $50, or $75 for same-day changes.
- Economy: Tickets include no free perks or increased mileage earnings. Change fees are $150.
Frontier's press release on AirFairs did not say how much you'd have to pay for each level of service, but a quick online price check for a Denver to New York one-way flight showed Classic fares costing $20 more than Economy and Classic Plus fares costing an additional $31. For a longer Los Angeles to New York one-way flight, the difference between Economy and Classic Plus was still only $20 but Classic Plus tickets were $55 more than Classic.
What do you think of Frontier's new pricing system? If you fly Frontier, what pricing level are you likely to choose?