Reality Check on Spirit Airlines

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  • #1958030
    catch yourself
    Participant

    For all those people advocating to boycott Spirit or to litigate them into bankruptcy:

    Spirit literally saves me and many, many, other Yidden, thousands of dollars every year on air travel.

    For example, I have tickets to spend Pesach with family for only about $35 each round trip. BH, we have to buy a large number of tickets. Over the past decade, we have flown probably around 40 round trips as a family, all on Spirit.

    As I posted elsewhere on YWN, I’ve never had a problem with any of their staff. I’ve actually only witnessed one instance of someone who did, and that person was clearly wrong, and clearly not Jewish.

    Were it not for Spirit’s cheap fares, I would almost never get to see most of my family, and my children would almost never get to see their grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins. Many Yidden would see their business expenses rise exponentially, and some would have to either relocate or close their businesses.

    Seen from this perspective, Spirit is a huge supporter of the Frum community. In your thoughtless reactionary arrogance, you are trying to hurt the finances of hundreds (perhaps thousands) of Yidden.

    #1958068
    ujm
    Participant

    CY: Is this the NY-Miami route that you’re flying?

    #1958111
    commonsaychel
    Participant

    I never fly Spirit because they nickle and dime you to death, they have lousy customer service and the CEO openly said they have nothing bu contempt for the passangers, however I do encourage everyone to fly them, I own stock it

    #1958134
    ezra101
    Participant

    you don’t really save money on spirit, you think you do. big myth. For example you pay 30$ to go on spirit From JFK to FLL. cost $30 oh you want a glass of water? that will be $10. you want a carry on? another $30.

    JFK to FLL on delta, jetblue or AA. $59 Includes carry on and glass of water, among other services. so unless your willing to fly just the shirt on your back you end up spending the same amount of money on spirit airlines.

    #1958179

    >> Is this the NY-Miami route that you’re flying?

    I agree with Catch’s sentiment!

    Maybe this have something do with NY, Jews being a significant subset of the whole?
    You can either blame NYers or spirit for not preparing their staff for the NY attitudes.

    I once interviewed w/ a consulting company that offered 2 tracks – NY and “the rest of the world”.
    I asked whether I can interview for both. They said – no, these are two different worlds. Choose one.

    #1958229
    catch yourself
    Participant

    @ezra101

    The myth is the idea that Spirit’s added fees bring the cost of flying with them close to that of other airlines.

    Spirit doesn’t fly to (or from) JFK. NY area airports are LGA and EWR. If you want to go to Lakewood, you can also try PHI and ACY.

    FLL-EWR on Spirit as of a few nights ago was $17 (just over half of what you thought).

    A bottle of water in-flight costs $3, not $10

    A carry on is not the same as a personal item. Most people traveling with a whole family usually check their luggage either way, so the carry on fee is mostly irrelevant. Personal items are free, in addition to your bag of food and any drinks you choose to buy after passing security. But let’s say I pay the $30 (or however much it is; I don’t actually know) for the carry on. Now I’m at $50.

    My return flight was the same price, so let’s call it $100 for the round trip.

    I checked all three airlines you recommended for the dates and airports of my flights. The cheapest of them was AA for $207 for the one round trip ticket, or more than double what I paid on Spirit including the drink and the carry on.

    Delta and JetBlue were both considerably more expensive.

    Incidentally, for any flights booked after the end of February 2021 and scheduled in July 2021 or later, JetBlue will be charging for carry on bags.

    I noticed this after closing the Delta and AA tabs, so I didn’t check with them. But I wouldn’t be surprised if they follow suit soon enough. It’s the same as charging for checked bags. Everyone screamed when Spirit started with it, but I think Southwest is the last airline that still doesn’t charge (although I may be wrong about that).

    In any case, for a family of 10 ticketed passengers, on Spirit you’re paying a total of under $800 round trip including checked bags and drinks, assuming that you don’t pay for carry on bags (fair assumption, since most people don’t).

    And these fares are readily available. It’s not like something you hear about that other people always do, but you can’t get.

    No other major airline comes even close.

    #1958924
    commonsaychel
    Participant

    Catch Yourself, Fyi I check a random date in the end of April NYC to Fla and guess what these were the RT prices
    Frontier 57
    United 81
    Jetblue 81
    American 99
    Delta 107
    Spirt 115

    #1958932
    catch yourself
    Participant

    So fly Frontier
    Or either United or JetBlue if you want something more reliable

    I have no vested interest in Spirit or any other airline, and I know that they don’t always have the cheapest fares. This does not detract from my basic point that Spirit is often by far the cheapest option, even including all the extra fees. Attacking Spirit hurts people like me, who actually save a lot of money by flying with them.

    #1958937

    Catch, yes. The price difference maybe not that important for small working families, but think how many Jewish families were able to afford vacations because of them! Yes, they charge extras, but for those for whom it matters (or who pride themselves on not paying retail), a little planning helps: give home water to all kids before security, pack all extras into one suitcase. Repeating a not well known secret – if you drive to and buy in the airport, you also skip their “online ticket fee”, and they might even assign your seats for free if you come when it is empty and you ask _nicely_.

    #1958960
    commonsaychel
    Participant

    By all means keep flying Spirt, Spirt stock went up 165% since I bought it, I still wont fly then even if I own shares becuase of the horrible customer service, that is one of the few things CT Lawyer and I agree on

    #1959001

    >> one of the few things CT Lawyer and I agree on

    Spirit = Ruach Shalom?

    #1959233
    CTLAWYER
    Participant

    @always
    Common Saychel and I actually agree on many things when politics, politicians and secular government is not involved

    #1959235
    catch yourself
    Participant

    AAQ,

    I almost exclusively buy tickets at the airport. You can typically (though not always) save about $15 per ticket ($30/round trip) by doing so.

    You can bring empty water bottles through security, and fill them at water stations in the terminal. and you can save money on drinks for the flight as well. If desired, bring some iced tea powder.

    Mine was one of the families that were able to take an otherwise impossible vacation this past summer thanks to Spirit’s low fares.

    #1959340
    commonsaychel
    Participant

    Catch, Our family flew on Frontier this summer, [$60 Rt NYC to LAS] same business model as Spirit, but at least the employees are not hostile to you.
    Ct Lawyer 🙂

    #1959400
    catch yourself
    Participant

    Common saychel

    Fly what you like. Just don’t disturb my ability to do the same, that’s all I ask.

    I’ve never had a problem with anyone from Spirit.

    I personally have never flown Frontier. From what I hear, it’s a similar experience to Spirit. The complaint I’ve heard about it is that, being a smaller airline, it has fewer flights on each route, so if something goes wrong you might be out of luck. If your flight is canceled (due to weather or whatever), you might rescheduled for several days later. A friend of mine had to purchase last minute tickets on another airline to get to his sibling’s wedding because of this.

    Granted, this was a while ago, so the situation might have changed by now.

    #1959437

    I am glad that we came to appreciation of what these companies provide.

    We often tend to think that “baalei tzedokah” are only those who donate their money to worthy causes. Does being paid for doing a mitzva makes it less of a mitzva? We allow even taking money for teaching Torah, so kal vehomer, anyone who does a mitzva of heeling people, helping people take cheap vacations, buy online goods desreves our appreciation. I think it is Ben Azzai who contemplated how many people are involved in making his breakfast? So much so in our time, when right now someone in China is packaging something you are going to buy tomorrow.

    #1959489
    commonsaychel
    Participant

    @AAQ, nothing personal but edited Milton Friedman said it best. “A Friedman Doctrine: The Social Responsibility of Business is to Increase Its Profits”. In it, he argued that a company has no social responsibility to the public or society; its only responsibility is to its shareholders.

    Spirit said it in as many words, the CEO said it our job to get you from point A to point B no different then the subway, anything extra you are going to pay for it, and if the plane does not fly thats too bad.

    If @ Catchyourself can beat them at their own game more power to him, fact of the matter is 60% of Spirits revenue come from ancilary fees and the airlines as a whole take in about 8 B in baggage fees.
    You really need to do some serious soul searching if your idea of tzedoka is low airfares and idea of terchah dtzibur is having them answer amain

    #1962601
    commonsaychel
    Participant

    Another day another family kicked off of Sprirt, thanks for reminding not flying them

    #1962644

    @common & Milton Friedman – There is no stira between Friedman and me. We are both saying that business creates value in the process of doing business.

    Note that Milton Friedman is often somewhat dogmatic and simplistic in his heroic defense of the free enterprise from the socialist plague. One striking example, he praises Hong Kong v. Israel, saying similar sized countries and see how better Hong Kong done w/ pure capitalism … With more time passed, we see that Hong Kong was gobbled by PRC and Israel produced some free enterprise …

    So, I would update Friedman with a permission to appreciate mitzvos achieved by business, not just rely on a theorem that business is good, thus I can just pursue whateer I want. When you select a direction for your business, you can select something that benefits Jews/humanity – food, books, medicine, defense, building/creation of new things, rather than buying/selling stocks that would also indirectly be useful, of course.

    Also, if you are blessed not to have shareholders, then you are even more free to choose direction for your business.

    Yerishalmi Shekalim ~ 13 similarly describes companies who would business with Beis Hamikdash without much profit – either to benefit from name recognition of their pasrtner or to combine business with tzedokah

    #1962710
    catch yourself
    Participant

    On my flight yesterday there were over a dozen obviously Frum families, altogether probably more than fifty people. I didn’t notice any of them (or anyone else) who was not in compliance with the mask rules.
    Nobody was kicked off the flight, and we got home pretty much on time.
    The flight cost me $17 per passenger, plus $2 for a coffee [in-flight] for me (free refills) and $3 for a drink for each person (purchased after security). We also paid for four checked bags ($41 each, which is higher than it used to be).
    Total cost: $286 one way, or $572 round trip, for 6 passengers.

    If you follow the rules, you have no problem and you get to take advantage of low prices.

    #1962772
    commonsaychel
    Participant

    @Catch Yourself, “We also paid for four checked bags ($41 each, which is higher than it used to be).
    Total cost: $286 one way, or $572 round trip, for 6 passengers.”
    Love it, that plus the lowest paid employees in the airline industry caused my Spirt stock to soar.

    #1962771
    commonsaychel
    Participant

    @AAQ, “One striking example, he praises Hong Kong v. Israel, saying similar sized countries and see how better Hong Kong done w/ pure capitalism … With more time passed, we see that Hong Kong was gobbled by PRC and Israel produced some free enterprise …”
    Hong Kong was not gobbled up by the PRC, it reverted back to China after the lease by the UK was over and they had to give certain assurances to them. Israel was dragged kicking into the free market during Bibi’s first term and the socialist were fighting him every step of the way.
    Please dont reinvent history. BTW Friedman was 1000% right the GNP of Hong Kong was and is still greater then Israel.
    If you told the CEO of Spirit, Ryanair or Wizz air that they are doing tzodoka they would laugh in your face and tell you to get a check up from your neck up

    #1962785
    CHOOSID
    Participant

    You really think a few Yidden on Yeshiva world saying there gunnu boycott spirit is bringing down the company?HA!!

    #1962786
    CHOOSID
    Participant

    You have to put a quarter in the plane every 5 minutes to keep it going

    #1962797
    catch yourself
    Participant

    @common saychel

    I’m very happy for you to profit from my saving money. That’s how capitalism works.

    I don’t like that Spirit has the lowest paid employees in the industry (if they in fact do, which I have not bothered to investigate), but that’s not my fight. I’m all for people getting as much money as they can, and if Spirit is forced to raise prices to retain their workforce, that will be too bad on me.

    I never contended that Spirit is a charitable organization, or that they should be honored at the next Agudah dinner. I was merely pointing out that their business model (which is obviously motivated purely by profit) is beneficial to many Jewish people (this was a very thinly veiled reference to the Gemara in the beginning of Maseches Avoda Zara about the other nations claiming reward for activities that benefited Klal Yisrael).

    @CHOOSID
    The [undeserved] relentless bad press to which YWN subjects Spirit surely does not go unnoticed. While you may be right that a YWN-based boycott wouldn’t kill Spirit, all of these articles and comments probably result in Spirit having a more jaded attitude towards people like me. In the end, your boycott will make my trips more expensive and less enjoyable.

    You can joke around all you want about their extra fees, but I’m the one who’s laughing on the way to the bank.

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