Low Cost Carriers

Last Minute Travel: Finding Award Availability & More

September 1, 2014

Today TPG Contributor Jason Steele offers insights into booking last minute flights, including tips for finding late award availability and minimizing costs when cash tickets are your only option. Travelers who book their flights far in advance generally enjoy the least expensive airline tickets and the most award availability. Nevertheless, there are many reasons why people […]

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Flight Review: Norwegian Air Intra-European 737-800 OSL-ARN

July 19, 2014

During his recent round-the-world trip, TPG Special Contributor Eric Rosen traveled throughout Scandinavia and got to take a flight on European upstart airline Norwegian Air. Here’s his review of the experience. Although my round-the-world award included business class flights on EVA, Singapore and SAS, one of the flights I was most interested to take was […]

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Ryanair Launches Free Electronic Boarding Pass App

July 16, 2014

I’ve made no secret of my feelings about Irish budget airline Ryanair, from my own horrible experience flying Ryanair last year to TPG Contributor Lori Zaino‘s tongue-firmly-in-cheek post on 10 Ways to Survive a Ryanair Flight. However, if I’m going to criticize, then in fairness I have to praise when the low-cost carrier does something right. Rather than being charged for the privilege of printing out a […]

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8,000 Free FreeSpirit Miles for Nothing

July 9, 2014

“Speaking of eating, I’d rather eat broken glass than deal with @SpiritAirlines ever again. Worse customer service imaginable.” This is just one of the many “hate” tweets Spirit Airlines recently received during their ongoing “Unleash the Hate” Campaign,which encourages Spirit passengers to, how shall we say, voice their dissatisfaction, and in exchange Spirit offers 8,000 frequent flyer miles.  […]

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Low(er)-Cost Carriers In Australia And New Zealand

May 27, 2014

TPG contributor Lori Zaino takes a look at few low/lower cost airlines that operate in Australia and New Zealand. If you have any experience or have suggestions, please feel free to share them in the comments. Simply put, Australia and New Zealand are far away from the US. When all is said and done, you’re […]

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Leveraging Low-Cost Carriers To Travel Cheaply Around Central and South America

May 6, 2014

There are so many ways you can maximize miles to get to large cities in Latin America, whether it’s American or now US Airways miles on TAM and LAN, or Delta SkyMiles on Aerolineas Argentinas, among other options. Once you’ve arrived, low-cost carriers can be a great way to get around cheaply and avoid the […]

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Maximizing Low Cost Carriers In Asia and the Middle East

March 31, 2014

Getting to Asia from the United States can often be a pricey experience (unless you’ve used miles, of course – and even then if there are fuel surcharges). Once you’ve arrived in Asia, you have endless options and extremely large territory to cover – especially if you plan to visit several countries during your time […]

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Maximizing Low Cost Carriers in Europe

November 11, 2013

Traveling through Europe by plane can get pricey – especially if you need a few positioning flights to get you to a hub where you can catch an award flight to or from the US, or to travel to several destinations on the continent once you’re already there – so flying low-cost airlines is a […]

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Pluna Airlines and the Flighty Flight Attendants

January 5, 2011

As I mentioned in my “Out of Office” message, my year-end vacation this year is a combination of Rio de Janeiro, Montevideo, Punta del Este and Buenos Aires. The quickest way to get from Rio to Montevideo was flying Pluna Airlines, the Uruguayan national carrier. I did some research before purchasing on Pluna and every report […]

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Delta Announces GOL Partnership and Triple Miles Promotion

December 6, 2010

This is a great enhancement and one I wish I knew about a couple weeks ago before I bought expensive intra-Brazil flights. Per this press release, Delta is now partners with GOL, which is basically the Southwest Airlines of South America. They operate a fleet of 737s and operate coach-only flights.  They move over 40% of domestic […]

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Program Score Card: Porter VIPorter

August 16, 2010

Feisty Canadian low-cost carrier Porter is known for being the only carrier that flies to Toronto Island airport, which is within the city limits and much more convenient for many people than Toronto Pearson  Porter only operates one-class Q-400 Turbo props and prides itself on simple fares and in-flight service. They target the business flyer […]

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Program Score Card: WestJet Frequent Guest

August 16, 2010

When it comes to Canadian low-cost carriers, WestJet leads the pack. As the second largest airline in Canada (behind Air Canada), they service 71 destinations in Canada, US, Mexico and the Caribbean. Their operational model is similar to Southwest’s in that they only operate coach-only 737 aircraft.  WestJet is not in any of the alliances, […]

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Program Score Card: Frontier EarlyReturns

August 12, 2010

Denver based Frontier Airlines recently acquired (through parent holding company Republic) Midwest airlines, so the two regional low cost carriers will merge to provide a formidable, though much smaller,  competitors  Southwest and United. Unlike Southwest however, they operate on a hub system, meaning almost all flights will run through Denver and Milkwaukee. Currency=  EarlyReturns Miles […]

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Program Score Card: Midwest Miles

August 11, 2010

Midwest was purchased by Frontier, so by this fall, their frequent flyer programs will have merged. It may be a bit pointless for me to do this analysis, but I’m a sucker for history, so I might as well document the Midwest Miles program for the frequent flyer time capsule Milwaukee based Midwest is known […]

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Program Score Card: Spirit FreeSpirit

August 10, 2010

Fort Lauderdale based Spirit Airlines has prided itself on becoming the first “ultra-low cost” airline. Spirit led the pack with fees: starting with baggage and also evolving into beverages and even middle seats. Spirit was in the news this year mostly for beginning a fee on carry-on baggage- a first of any US airline. Fees […]

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Program Score Card: Sun Country UFly Rewards

August 9, 2010

If you live in Minneapolis, you are probably familiar with Sun Country airlines. This unique MSP-based low-cost carrier flies to 35 destinations in the US, Caribbean, Mexico and as of June 2010, seasonal service to London Stansted. Sun Country has a similar operating model to Southwest in that it only has a fleet of Boeing […]

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Coming this Week: Spotlight on Non-Legacy Frequent Flyer Programs

August 8, 2010

A lot of my content is geared towards the 5 major US airline frequent flyer programs (American, Continental, Delta, United, US Airways). Collectively, they have millions of members and constitute a majority of domestic flights. However, many frequent flyers have been switching to low cost carriers (like Southwest and AirTran) and boutique carriers (like Virgin […]

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