Categorized | Airlines

Spirit doubles fee for buying flights on its website…

Posted on 16 November 2011


A Spirit Airlines aircraft parks at a gate at Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport.

Spirit Airlines, already well-known for its long list of fees, is upping the fee it charges for booking tickets online.


How much does it now cost to buy a ticket via Spirit’s website?


That’s now $16.99 each way – or about $34 round trip – to book flights at


The airline raised the fee on domestic flights on Nov. 8, upping it from the previous price of $8.99 each way. On international flights, however, the fee change actually represents a $2 reduction.


“It’s one of the sneakiest fees in the industry,” George Hobica, founder of Airfarewatchdog, says to AP.


Hobica says that he also takes exception to Spirit listing the fee as the generic-sounding “passenger usage fee,” which it includes along with the typical government-imposed taxes and fees.


“It’s very disingenuous. It does look like some unavoidable fee,” Hobica says.


Allegiant is the only other U.S. carrier that charges a similar fee. It charges a $17 “convenience fee,” whether a traveler is flying one-way or round-trip.


AP points out that a $34 round trip, such a fee could dramatically increase what otherwise would seem to be a low fare on Spirit.


“Spirit’s booking fee could be 40% or more of a ticket’s total price,” AP writes. “For instance a $14 fare each way between Detroit and New York included $21.40 in federal taxes and security fees and the $33.98 usage fee.”

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