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As American Airlines is threatening to disallow changes to nonrefundable tickets, Frontier Airlines is going in the opposite direction. In a somewhat shocking move for an ultra low-cost carrier that makes a significant portion of its revenue on fees, Frontier Airlines is eliminating fees to change or cancel flights as long as you’re 90 days or more from departure.
You will still be responsible for any fare differential, but there will no longer be a $99 change fee added on top of the fare difference for flights 90+ days plus in advance. This move aligns Frontier Airlines with Southwest’s fee model for those flights 90 days or more from takeoff, though Southwest takes this a step further and never charges change fees even close to departure.
Should you need to change or cancel your Frontier flights 14-89 days before departure, the new lower change fee is $49 per ticket, plus any fare difference. Changes or cancellations to Frontier Airlines flights that are made 13 days or less from the date of travel will still be subject to the normal $99 change fee, plus any fare difference. Those $49 or $99 change/cancellation fees are subtracted from the value of the ticket at the time you make the change.
Daniel Shurz, senior vice president, commercial for Frontier Airlines said: “We want our customers to know that when they book early on Frontier, there is no worry about changing travel plans. Unlike other airlines that are raising change fees, Frontier is dedicated to making it easier to make plans to travel.”
Frontier hopes that the potential loss in change fee revenue will be made up with additional bookings as a result of its more customer-friendly changes. The airline especially hopes this to be true as Frontier competes with basic economy fares on other carriers that often do not allow any changes.
This is not Frontier’s first family-friendly change this year, as earlier this summer it also revamped its loyalty program to included higher elite tiers that convey perks (such as included stretch seat assignments) for up to eight people on the reservation and introduced the family pooling of miles to elite customers and cardholders. Earlier this year, Frontier also introduced a way to earn elite status miles entirely by using its cobranded credit card.
You can currently book Frontier flights through April 29, 2019, so should you wish to lock in a family getaway on Frontier Airlines this spring, you can do so without significant stress since those flights will be eligible for free changes until 90 days before departure. As always, when booking airfare remember to use one of the best credit cards for airfare purchases to earn bonus points and/or take advantage of built-in travel protections.
Featured image by Summer Hull.
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