Let’s not mince phrases: Booking flights with Frontier Airlines miles is a ache. Between the complicated charges, quick expiration window and low-value miles, the effort of award reserving can seemingly outweigh the profit.
However don’t lose hope — these superior reserving strategies can assist you wring extra worth out of your Frontier miles. Whether or not you’re a seasoned elite standing holder or a Frontier beginner, the following tips can assist you take advantage of the airline’s finicky system.
Know thy enemy: charges
Frontier provides two varieties of charges to award flights:
Gas charges and different surcharges. Nearly all airways add these charges. For home journey on Frontier the quantity is normally small ($5.60 one-way), however these can get far more costly on worldwide award journey (about $50 every approach for journey to Jamaica).
“Redemption” Charges. Many airways now embody close-in charges for award journey booked inside a pair weeks, however Frontier is alone in making use of these charges to any award flight booked inside 180 days of journey. Particularly, listed below are the charges tacked on based mostly on how far out they’re booked:
21-179 days earlier than journey: $15.
7-20 days earlier than journey: $50.
<6 days earlier than journey: $75.
There’s no technique to keep away from the primary type of charges when reserving with Frontier or different airways. Nevertheless, the “redemption” charges could be averted in numerous methods.
Redemption charges don’t apply for these with both elite standing or the Frontier Airlines World Mastercard®. For those who earn sufficient Frontier miles rapidly sufficient to guide an award flight earlier than these miles expire, you’re probably an excellent candidate for each elite standing and making use of for this card.
Frontier’s lowest-tier elite standing requires solely 20,000 flown miles, and the Frontier Airlines World Mastercard® carries a comparatively modest $79 annual price, which might practically be offset by making a single reserving lower than per week earlier than you wanted to fly.
If neither elite standing nor the bank card works along with your plans, there’s one other, sneakier technique to slip round these outrageous charges…
Mess around with free adjustments
For all its faults, the Frontier Miles program does provide one very helpful perk: It doesn’t cost change charges on award bookings if the “fare class” of each tickets is similar and the change is made eight or extra days earlier than flying. Let’s break that down and clarify the way it helps.
The “fare class” of a ticket is usually an inner instrument to assist observe stock and value. Mainly, the most cost effective fare courses are the primary to promote out. To examine a possible flight’s fare class, observe the “Fare Guidelines” hyperlink in the course of the checkout move (highlighted in purple right here):
The fare rule is displayed on the high of the pop-up part:
Since it is a “Class G” fare, it means I can change it to a different Class G fare on the identical route at no cost, so long as I accomplish that no less than eight days earlier than my flight.
See the place that is going? You’ll be able to guide a flight greater than 180 days out (with no redemption charges), after which change it to a extra close-in flight at no cost with out incurring these charges.
This nifty workaround does require some further effort, since adjustments can solely be made on the telephone. So that you’ll wish to examine that the identical ticket is accessible (in the identical class) earlier than you guide. Then guide the flight that’s no less than 180 days out, name Frontier and request the free change. If for no matter purpose the change will not be allowed, you need to be capable to cancel your authentic reserving inside 24 hours and obtain a full refund.
Use the month view to look
The above strategies require some persistence, however this one’s simple: Use the “month” view when making award searches on the Frontier web site. This provides you with a fast view of each availability and pricing throughout a bigger time-frame, and make sure you don’t spend too many miles.
The month view choice is displayed as a toggle on the high of the search outcomes web page.
This view is particularly useful for routes that Frontier doesn’t fly daily of the week, because it offers a snapshot view of which days are served.
Test worldwide routes
Since Frontier serves principally home locations, they’re in all probability not the primary to come back to thoughts when planning a global journey. But the airline’s footprint in Central America and the Caribbean would possibly shock you.
What’s extra, these routes can provide an excellent return on miles. For instance, we discovered one-way availability from Denver to Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, for 15,000 miles + $47 in charges. The equal money fare ran $216 one-way, making this a good redemption provided that we worth Frontier miles at simply 0.6 cent every.
The underside line
The Frontier MiIes program could be a ache. Shock charges, expiring miles and a tough award search instrument could make for a irritating expertise for the uninitiated. Fortunately, you’re now outfitted with just a few instruments to make reserving Frontier award flights much less cumbersome.
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