Frontier is probably one of the best airlines in the industry, especially in terms of low-fare providers. They were founded in 1994 and are based out of Denver Colorado. They offer 80 destinations in the United States and abroad, mostly in North America, with flights going to the Dominican Republic, Mexico, and other nearby realms close to the United States. Frontier has one of the most generous programs for rewards in the industry. 20,000 economy frequent flier miles gets a client a round-trip ticket anywhere in the United States. Frontier however, does not do sharing of its frequent flyer miles with other airlines, much like the American Airlines Group does. Frontier is currently upgrading its fleet, which is a nice feature. Most airlines have planes in their fleet that are close to fifteen years old. Frontier uses mostly Airbus jets for its main fleet, including the Airbus 319 and 320. The average age of a Frontier jet is about 8-1/2 years, meaning that Frontier wants the best jets possible for its customers. One downside of Frontier's mergers and acquisitions was the closing of the Milwaukee hub. We found that this adversely impacted Frontier employees, as well as reducing some of their flights that were a central component in their business model because of the central location of the Milwaukee hub.

 

Rank Chart
Checked Bags
WiFi Price
Our Score
#1
Free
$8/day
8.2
#2
$25-$35
$16/day
7.9
#3
$25
$16/day
7.6
#9
frontier
$25-$35
$4.95-$12.95
6.3

The Good

Frontier is a low-fare airline. They stay true to this reputation by offering the lowest prices for flights. They are often one of the lowest or the lowest priced option for their flights.
They also offer one of the most generous rewards programs. 20,000 economy frequent flier miles gets a round-trip ticket anywhere in the United States served by Frontier. There are also special deals that are always available and changing on the Frontier website that will help lower their prices even more. Frontier has few destinations though, so while they may the lowest option, they may not be available for the flights a customer needs. Frontier also does not allow their frequent flier miles to be shared with other airlines. This is unfortunate since other airlines such as American Airlines does allow this.

Frontier Airlines has certain specified times for boarding their flights:
• 45 minutes before departure: bags must be checked in
• 30 minutes before departure: passengers must be at the gate, boarding will begin
• 15 minutes before departure: final boarding
• 10 minutes before departure: doors close

They also have a few groups that will always board their plane first. They include:
1. Special Services: anyone needing wheelchair or other boarding assistance and unaccompanied minors
2. Passengers who have purchased a carry-on bag
3. Courtesy boarding: families traveling with children under three and any other passenger requiring additional time or assistance

Seats are assigned on Frontier flights which help make the boarding process smoother as passengers know exactly where they are headed when they enter the aircraft. Frontier recommends that passengers choose their seats while they are booking their tickets. This way passengers can choose their preference, and try to keep their party together however it does cost a fee to choose a seat. If a seat is not chosen at booking, one will randomly be assigned during the check-in process for free. Check-in can be done at the airport or online and must be done at least 45 minutes before departure for domestic flights, and 60 minutes for international flights.

Frontier has fairly average on-time percentages for their daily flights. The received the following statistics from Flightstats.com:

• 80% on-time
• 7% late
• 3% very late
• 7% excessive

Many of the top airlines are slightly higher than this rating. The margin that they are better is not much however, Frontier is still rather consistent for being generally on time. Their most active routes, however, did receive much lower ratings than top airlines. Generally the top airlines active routes are receiving four to five-star ratings, while Frontier flights received mostly two to three-star ratings. Their top flights include:

• Denver to Portland (4.1 stars, 88% on time)
• San Diego to Denver (3.7 stars, 87% on time)
• Denver to Minneapolis (3.4 stars, 85% on time)

Their lowest flight is Denver to Dallas (1.4 stars, 74% on time). These ratings show that Frontier is not as consistent with providing on time, not delayed or canceled flights as some of the other airlines. Frontier offers more than 275 daily flights and is a much smaller airline than some of the top they are compared to. Their most active routes looked at are all domestic locations.

Frontier Airlines began in 1994 and has been providing low-fare air travel for the past 21 years. 21 years of service does not make them a brand new airline. They have had time to grow with the industry, and expand. They are however, a young airline when compared with some of the major airlines. A number of other airlines, both major and small, have been around for over 80 years, about four times as long as Frontier. An advantage to Frontier’s young age is their young fleet. Many of their airplanes are newer than other airlines offer. Frontier is also the proud winner of the Federal Aviation Administration’s 2014 Diamond Award for maintenance excellence. They were also recently named the industry’s most fuel-efficient airline by the International Council on Clean Transportation. Along with these awards, Frontier is one of the safest airlines. They have never had a fatal accident, an impressive feat for a low-fare carrier.

The Bad

Because Frontier is a low-cost airline, they do not offer any free baggage. All checked and carry-on bags cost money. Baggage is cheaper when it is booked online at least 24 hours before departure. There is a price increase for bags checked at the ticket counter of the airport and another increase for bags checked at the gate. There are also certain size restrictions for checked luggage. Bags must not exceed 62 inches collectively (Length + Width + Depth) and 50 pounds. Bags that exceed this will have an additional charge of $75 for each bag that is overweight and $75 for each oversized bag, and bags over 100 pounds or in excess of 110 linear inches will not be accepted.

Because Frontier is a low-fare airline, they do not offer many of the standard amenities found on much larger airlines. They do not offer any entertainment options or Wi-Fi. They state that they would rather pass those savings onto the customers. They also do not offer any complimentary food or beverages. They do have an array of options for snacks and beverages that are available for purchase on the flight however. Their non-alcoholic drinks cost $2. This is unusual even for low-fare airlines. Generally other low cost airlines provide complimentary non-alcoholic beverages and maybe some light snacks. Frontier however charges for all food onboard. Their snack choices include:

• Chex mix
• Almond M&M’s
• Beef Jerky
• Pringles Chips
• Gummy Bears
• Rice Krispies
• Frontier Trail Mix

Frontier also offers a number of bundled options for different snacks and drinks. They serve coffee as well and their alcoholic beverages will run about $7 a drink.

The Bottom Line

We would recommend Frontier without reservation and would even go so far as to say that they are one of the best low-fare airlines in the industry. We liked their relatively young fleet, the Airbus planes that make up their  fleet, and the customer experience that customers get. We really liked our phone-in experience. Our questions were easily answered and we also really liked the no-hassle refund policy for customers who have a canceled flight. If you’re flight is canceled or delayed up to three hours, you will get a refund of your ticket or a new flight.

When flying with Frontier Airlines, there are several important checked baggage policies that customers should know in advance to arriving at the airport for travel. Frontier Airlines has different prices for checked baggage depending on when and where a customer chooses to check in their luggage. The cheapest option is to use the Flyfrontier website at the time of the ticket purchase to indicate how many bags need to be checked and to check them in online. This option will cost customers thirty dollars for the first bag, forty for a second and seventy-five-dollars for a third along with any additional bags. Customers who decide to check in luggage at an airport counter or at a self-help kiosk will be charged forty dollars for the first bag, forty-five for a second and eighty dollars for each additional bag. The most expensive option for Frontier Airline customers is to wait to check in a bag at the departure gate. This will cost sixty dollars for every bag that needs to be checked. Sixty dollars per bag is also the price Frontier Airlines charges customers whose luggage exceeds the standard requirement of fifty pounds per bag and sixty-two inches. However, an important thing to note about Frontier Airlines is that unlike many other airline companies, they do not allow a free carry-on bag. Frontier Airlines will allow passengers to bring a personal item such as a purse, laptop, or briefcase but a carry-on bag will cost an additional thirty-five to sixty dollars depending on where it is checked in, with the cheapest option being once again through the Flyfrontier website. Compared to other airlines, this checked baggage policy and procedure is not as customer friendly as some of the other companies in the industry. Most airlines include a carry-on bag as a free option and the prices for checked baggage are lower. Frontier Airlines charges customers for a carry-on bag and has higher prices on all checked baggage.

There are many different things that can happen before and during a trip that can cost a customer additional expenses. These are the type of situations that customers want insurance in knowing that some compensation might be available just in case. The following are the most important types of insurance an airline company can offer to their customers:

• Trip cancellations and refund policy

• Baggage delay or loss

• Special assistance during a flight

The Frontier Airline policy on trip cancellation and refunds is fairly standard. Customers have a twenty-four-hour grace period during which time they are able to cancel or make changes to any purchased tickets with a full refund and no penalty fees issued. After that grace period ends however, the type of ticket purchased comes into play. Frontier Airlines offers two types of tickets, refundable and non-refundable. A refundable ticket will cost more money upfront but allows customers the ability to cancel or make changes to any travel plans. Refundable tickets are given the option to purchase a new ticket, receive credit for the ticket amount to be used within one year, or to be refunded the cost of the ticket in the form of the original payment. Unfortunately, refundable tickets are only available to specialty seating aboard Frontier Airline flights. All Economy class tickets are non-refundable, and while they can be given credit to be used on future Frontier Airline flights within the same year, they will be charged a change free of ninety-nine-dollars. In the event that an unexpected life event happens causing a customer to cancel travel plans, Frontier Airlines will allow the ticket to be changed for up to ninety days without a penalty fee. These unexpected life events can include, jury duty or court subpoena, lost or stolen travel documents or illness of the customer, travel companion or immediate family member. For baggage that is lost or damaged during a Frontier Airlines flight, customers must report the claim within the first four hours of the flights arrival. After a claim is made, Frontier Airlines will continue to search for any missing luggage. Luggage that cannot be located has a thirty-five-hundred-dollar liability limit for all domestic flights. Frontier Airlines will also not compensate for any reasonable expenses that occur during delayed or lost baggage time. Any customer who are in need of special assistance during a flight can request such help prior to a flight. Frontier Airlines has all accommodations necessary to make traveling both safe and comfortable to passengers who might need any additional help. To better help customers, Frontier Airlines has twenty-four-seven worldwide assistance available by phone for anyone with questions or concerns.

The rewards program at Frontier Airlines is called the Frequent Flyer, Early Returns program. This program allows customers to earn reward miles by purchasing Frontier Airline tickets. Customer can receive a minimum of five hundred points or miles for every economy fare ticket purchased through Frontier Airlines. Customers can then continue collecting reward miles until enough are accrued to purchase travel fare. With the Frequent Flyer Early Returns program, an average of twenty thousand mile points is needed for a roundtrip domestic ticket anywhere in the United States. Although the type of ticket and destination of the flight are restricted and limited to only the options Frontier Airlines has available at the time of purchase. Additionally, the Early Returns rewards program does have blackout dates which restrict members from purchasing airline tickets with earned mileage points on certain days. These days depend on the tier level in the rewards program a customer belongs to and how many reward miles a member has earned. As a benefit to customers the points earned through this program do not expire as long as a member has activity at least every six months on their rewards account. Compared to other airline company’s rewards program, the Frontier Airlines Frequent Flyer Early Returns rewards program does not offer many benefits to their customers. Other airline companies in the industry have competitive rewards programs that offer no blackout dates, and unlimited fare options for reward point purchase. The restrictions Frontier Airlines has on their rewards members make the program not as competitive as others in the aviation reward industry.

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89 Frontier Airlines Reviews

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  1. User Score

    2

    September 16th, 2016

    This is absolute nonsense, the ridiculous cost of ANY baggage means that you aren’t paying any less than another (read: better) airline. Also, if you check in and choose a seat, it will range from 13-35 extra dollars. There aren’t any employees at the airport willing to help, plus their website is insanely unhelpful. Never flying Frontier again.

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    1

  2. User Score

    0

    March 22nd, 2016 Denver, CO

    I read the article on the “Bestcompany” site and am HORRIFIED! This is the worst airline I’ve ever flown, and I will never pay them again. They overbook and deny they overbook. Stay away from them.

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  3. User Score

    0

    September 2nd, 2015 Denver, CO

    On Frontier flight 775 out of Denver, the plane is filthy filthy!!#

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  4. User Score

    0

    August 24th, 2015 Littleton, CO

    Used to be a good airline but terrible in the past few years. I finally gave up flying them. Flew to Nashville and on the return flight I arrive at the airport to find no one at the counter. They have a 45 min. minimum check in and no one to check you in. Finally got an email 30 mins before my flight that it was delayed SIX hours! No compensation. I bought a ticket to Seattle. A month before my flight they told me instead of leaving at 7 AM I was leaving at 7 PM- cancelling an entire day of my vacation. Then they tried to charge me to cancel my ticket. Several hour wait times on the phone to talk to a rude human who was no help. Finally Facebook and Twitter bombed them to get my money back. HORRIBLE HORRIBLE HORRIBLE! Don’t fly them under any circumstances.

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    1

  5. User Score

    2

    August 23rd, 2015 Selbyville, DE

    I loved flying Frontier from Wilmington DE to Orlando FL. Made the trip several times during the brief period that it was offered. HOWEVER, almost every phone call I’ve made to Frontier, I was put on an automatic 55 minute hold. Which is not pretty if you’re calling from your cell phone and your battery is draining away. Sending them an email with a question put you in a one-week wait for a response. Seriously?? Every time I flew on the weekends, the plane seemed to be packed. But flying during the week was less full. Then they changed their schedule so that, unless you were retired like me, you had to take SIX DAYS VACATION to fly to Orlando and get both your weekends. Apparently, Frontier wasn’t happy with their bad schedule either, and pulled out of ILG altogether. If only they would fly one piece of equipment out of ILG every weekend, say early Saturday morning, and one flight back from Orlando late Sunday afternoon, they’d probably be full up. But they didn’t seem to be concerned about customer feedback. So we’re all back to flying out of Philly or Baltimore when Wilmington would be so much easier. Don’t love them anymore.

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  6. User Score

    0

    August 23rd, 2015 Aurora, CO

    They took the TVs away, changed the seats (they are so uncomfortable and HARD, no reclining) shorter leg room, the pull down trays are a joke….so small you can just fit a beverage cup on it. Had to PAY to get a seat assignment! Pretty soon they will charge for the air that we breathe. Charging for carry-ons? Geez. Oh yeah….Brand new hard suitcase cracked.

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  7. User Score

    0

    August 23rd, 2015 Chicago, IL

    My daughter hurt her back. My wife booked a ticket to go to Denver to help her. My daughter has a 5 year old and a 13 month old. Just 1 day before departure my wife came down with the flu. I called Frontier to change the name on the ticket to mine. I only needed to change the first name (4 letters)THEY WOULD NOT DO THIS!!! I had to buy another ticket. I booked the same seat on the same flight! it was expensive. I think it stinks!

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    2

  8. User Score

    8

    August 22nd, 2015 Trenton, NJ

    We fly Frontier out of Trenton to Ft Myers Fla..love the small airport and easy access from home, however, I do have issue with the pricing for “in season” flights to Ft Myers.. If I want to book now, it would cost over $1500 for two people for a 4 day stay..I didn’t pay that for my recent trip which was 14 days I realize that flying back on a weekend is more but I refuse to pay that ridiculous amount for basically the same route.
    Overall, the airline is great…last trip down, the flight attendants were awesome, didn’t spend the money on their snacks and did pay extra for stretch seating. I do feel that carry on’s should be free but the idea of not having to go to baggage claim at any airport is a plus..Will def fly them again!

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  9. User Score

    3

    August 22nd, 2015 Elkton, MD

    Friendly flight staff. TINY seats, the most uncomfortable I have ever been in! Very little padding, tiny tray tables. Low costs are eliminated by the fact that EVERYTHING costs extra. OK for very short flights but I would never go a long way…hour max. Many convenient airports have been eliminated and check in service at larger airports is miserable. Gate opened late and folks were waiting in line for quite a while to check in. You get what you pay for!

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  10. User Score

    9

    August 20th, 2015 East Brunswick, NJ

    I just got back flying Frontier Trenton to Chicago then Chicago to Los Angles ..all flights were on time some were early too. Flight Attendants were courteous..only flaws I have expensive for a carry on and seat upgrades. oh ya. cant you fly from Trenton to LA with one stop. I had to book 2 separate flights to get to LA… using my frequent flyer miles…. with the new seats/ no TV screen offer some incentive to fly Frontier. free one carry on or something????

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  11. User Score

    0

    August 20th, 2015 North Olmsted, OH

    August 4th 2015 Cancun to Cleveland Flight 63 4;00pm

    AWFUL Service, my luggage was thrown so hard My newer American Tourister luggage broke and my belongings, what was left of them were in a large ripped plastic bag on the conveyor belt. No one would help or respond to my issue. We were a group of 8 and our transport car was waiting, the people at the Frontier gate said sorry but there is nothing we can do for you. Half of my belongings were missing and my luggage was destroyed. Frontier will not do a thing let alone return my calls.

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    1

  12. User Score

    0

    August 19th, 2015 Stow, OH

    The most uncomfortable seats I’ve ever experienced. Almost no padding, no recline at all. I will never fly it again if I can help it. The cheap rates aren’t worth it.

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    1

  13. User Score

    10

    August 19th, 2015 New Tazewell, TN

    I loved the one and only flight on Frontier, unfortunately they discontinued their service in Knoxville, TN!

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  14. User Score

    0

    August 18th, 2015 Houston, TX

    These new seats were horrible. Wouldnt recline , and were very uncomfortable. Throw the tray table away. Was useless. They don’t offer anything comimetary anymore either. Compare it to riding in a prison bus!! No shackles but might as well have had them on. I was so cramped i coyldnt move. No thanks. Not anymore. Here i come southwest

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    2

  15. User Score

    0

    August 17th, 2015 Brooklyn, NY

    From 7/20 til now my baggage has not been recovered. All I am getting from this airline is “WE ARE SORRY”. And I say yes they are SORRY in more ways than one. No compensation has been offered for my lost. CUSTOMER SERVICE is PITIFUL, UNPROFESSIONAL AND FOR A LACK OF A BETTER WORD USELESS. WHEN IT COMES TO PROBLEM SOLVING. I want them to live up to their LOST BAGGAGE POLICY. I WOULD ADVISE EVERYONE NOT TO DEAL WITH THIS AIRLINE. CHEAP IS NOT ALWAYS BEST; you wind up losing in the end.

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  16. User Score

    1

    August 17th, 2015 Denver, CO

    First flight was delayed. Second flight got delayed, and then delayed, and then delayed again. I believe we will be delayed a 4 time.

    No complimentary snacks. The table in front of me is so small it can’t fitbmy laptop, my notepad, or even my book. Why even bother with one?

    First airline I have ever been so dissatisfied with.

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  17. User Score

    4

    August 17th, 2015 Kansas City, MO

    For whatever reason they have all but abandoned KC. I flew Frontier often to Jackson WY and Durango CO. Both of those cities have been dropped from their schedules. Today I tried to search for flights to both Bozeman MT and Salt Lake City. Neither would produce a round trip itinerary for me. Last time I flew with them was over 2 years ago. Now they seem to be functioning as more like a charter outfit. Service to many cities on an every other day basis.
    Never had a complaint then. Sadly I don’t see myself ever flying with them again as they no longer go where I want to go

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  18. User Score

    10

    August 16th, 2015 Colorado Springs, CO

    I have been flying with Frontier for some time now. I love this airline even though I did have a rather rude ticket/gate agent my last trip out of Phx. I will continue to give them my business.

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  19. User Score

    2

    August 15th, 2015 Spokane, WA

    we use to fly frontier all the time at least twice a year, fares work reasonable, free carry on, received a drink an fresh cookie, they flew to the city I needed to go to. Now, I have to pay for my seat at time of booking if I want to choose my seat, no drink, no cookie, I have to pay for a carry on, which is more than a checked bag, Frontier is no long the cheapest to fly, I am disappointed

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  20. User Score

    0

    August 14th, 2015 Hershey, PA

    Have you ever flown with Frontier ? This company is the worst. Booked travel for a holiday and was emailed a few days before my flight regarding changes to my route. When I call customer service I was told the route was discontinued. CS rep laughed and said there was nothing they could do. Then she hung up on me….I would not fly frontier if my tickets were free. I would advise anyone to check the Frontier FB page before purchasing a ticket.

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