Travel news to know: Budget airline Frontier has just dropped it’s toll-free customer service number to save money, and a European airline wants to weigh us before boarding.
Frontier hopes to save about $2 million a year by dropping the 800-number, which an executive says “will help keep fares low””. According to the Denver Post, the cost savings for Denver-based Frontier Airlines breaks down to a whopping six cents per passenger seat.
The pay-per call center now has a Salt Lake City area-code, making it a long-distance call for anybody without a national long-distance plan. That will affect passengers with landlines only, and let’s face it, there are still people in the world who don’t have cellphones.
Frontier fares start low, but once you start adding up all the extra charges, it’s less of a bargain.
Frontier now charges $49 to $69 each way on top of its low-priced fares for a bundled package of checked baggage and seat assignments, which brings the ticket price closer to full-fare airlines with a commitment to customer service.
What will airlines charge us for next? Seat belts?
Spirit and Allegiant, two other low-cost US-flag airlines, have similar charges, but they have far fewer complaints lodged against them, according to USA Today.
Uzbekistan Airways says it will begin weighing passengers with their carry-on luggage, to ensure that too many overweight people and bags aren’t clustered together and cause the plane to tip to one side in flight. According to the Sunday Express of Great Britain, this is permitted by international airline regulations.
I’ve been on small passenger flights, such as between islands in the Caribbean, and helicopter flightseeing over Kauai, Hawaii, where I’ve been weighed, along with my cameras in mascara in my carry-on, to ensure the load was balanced. But never on an international flight.
This could be the the first stop towards charging passengers by weight. Oh – wait – Samoa Air is doing that already.