Frontier just introduced a very Frontier approach to onboard distancing
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
UPDATE: Frontier backtracks on physical distance fee following congressional uproar (May 7, 2020)
ORIGINAL POST: Southwest Airlines is capping ticket sales to help keep middle seats open — Frontier Airlines is asking you to pay for the privilege. Following a new requirement for passengers to wear masks, beginning May 8, to help reduce the risk of spreading coronavirus, the carrier is giving customers the opportunity to sit next to an open seat — for an additional fee.
Billed as “More Room,” Frontier’s new product guarantees an empty middle seat, “for extra peace of mind or simply additional comfort,” according to the airline. “Flights departing May 8 through August 31, 2020 will have 18 More Room seats available for passengers to select, including Stretch seats in the first three rows of the aircraft, which also provide extra legroom and recline as compared to standard seats. Frontier will announce at a later date whether the More Room program will be extended beyond August 31.”
The new seating option joins Frontier’s existing initiative, which currently includes blocking alternating rows for pre-selection — agents will do their best to stagger remaining seats at the gate, but passengers may ultimately end up flying in these rows on busier flights. Frontier also appears to be pricing middle seats higher than windows and aisles in some rows, to further encourage distancing.
“More Room” seats are available starting at $39, and I did find that rate available on several of Frontier’s longer hauls, including Philadelphia (PHL) to Las Vegas (LAS) and Orlando (MCO) to Denver (DEN). Stretch seats, which also include blocked middles, are available starting at $79 on short-hauls, or $89 for longer flights.
In theory, Frontier’s More Room option could make sense with an exceptionally low base fare, but keep in mind that the carrier’s fares don’t include any bags — anything larger than a purse or laptop bag requires a $39 fee, just to bring onboard the plane.
Ultimately, if an empty middle seat is what you’re after, depending on the route and fare, it could make sense to book travel on Alaska, Delta or Southwest — as outlined in my detailed onboard coronavirus measures guide, all three are blocking passengers from purchasing middle seats (or their equivalent), guaranteeing personal space onboard without the extra fee.
Featured photo by Nick Ellis/The Points Guy.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer ends 8/3/2022.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer ends 8/3/2022.
- Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs up to two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide including takeout and delivery in the U.S., and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $80 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® after you apply through any Authorized Enrollment Provider. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees