The David Siegel Scam, How Frontier Airlines Scams Customers

I’ve watched over the past month many friends posting angry messages after last minute or crazy fees were thrown at them by Frontier Airlines. I wanted to document how this works, partially to warn others but partially to ask them politely that this is no way to treat customers.

So lets say you book your flight to somewhere through Priceline, Kayak, Orbitz or other travel aggregators that have been in business for the past 10 years trying to make your life easier. You book the flight, show up with a carry on and get to the gate to be slapped with a $100 fee. Huh? You have never heard about this fee for good reason, Frontier hides it. It is ridiculous and everyone that works at Frontier should be ashamed to work for a company like this.

Lets walk you through this scam (because that is what it is).

#1 Booking with an Aggregator

“Best price guaranteed” should lead the consumer to think of, well, just that.

Frontier Airlines Scam Screen Shot 2013-11-11 at 2.53.13 PM

#2 Show up to the airport

There are two lines to check in, the place for bags and place for people with just carry on bags.

People with bags get this sign (your first time being alerted to the scam):

David-Siegel-scam

People that are just checking in with no bags get this setup:

David Siegel Scam Frontier

Notice how there is no sign, no warning? They hide the fact that they are going to charge you. Does any airline, in the world do this? I’ve flown ~30 airlines and this is the only time I’ve ever heard of this.

#3 Get to the gate

So get to your gate and find out to board the plane you need to hand over $100 because they recently changed their policy, with no notice.

So my question to David Siegel, the CEO of Frontier Airlines: Do you think this is the way to run a company in Colorado? Why do you participate in the aggregators if you are going to change the rules to double the price of flights?

Frontier Airlines is falling apart and I encourage you to stay away from flying them until they get these scams stopped. When they go under we can only look at their leadership for being so historically stupid.

  • Do you want to pre pay for something that you have never had to pay for before? Something that 98% of the airlines in the world don’t charge for?

    Well, when you put it that way.

    If the customer is informed every step of the way why are you losing life long customers? You design the system and monitor the success and failure rate of what you have implemented, and this seems to be failing horribly, but blame the customers, that is a great strategy.

  • FormerF9er

    did you also read what I posted earlier? these survey’s were all done before out sourcing was complete in all the cities. Now that the out sourcing is complete as of a few weeks ago watch the ratings for frontier crash, metaphorically speaking of course.

  • FormerF9er

    actually, the rules are set by the faa, the faa says the bag can be no longer than 45 linear inches. this way all airlines are uniform with carry on bags

  • FormerF9er

    it happens all the time unfortunately, I think they do it on purpose.

  • FormerF9er

    he was already checked in and if frontier were an honorable airline/business, which they clearly are not, they would of hit the “print boarding pass” button in sabre which could reprint a boarding pass for someone that is ALREADY checked in and past the “cut off”. it’s extortion and you know it.

  • FormerF9er

    starting in January I believe it is, somewhere around the beginning of ’14 anyways, they will start charging for carry-ons for economy tickets as well….which are purchased directly through the flyfrontier.com website. it’s only a matter of time before they start charging for classic and plus tickets too.

  • FormerF9er

    http://www.dot.gov/sites/dot.dev/files/docs/2013NovemberATCR.pdf
    Frontier….number 1 in customer complaints….

  • Doug Miller

    Its the Travel companies/agents that are hiding all the fine print and Frontier gets the blame.The travel companies don’t care who are what or how it gets done as long as they just book as many people on whom ever they can without informing them of the rules.Those customer’s might not have been so surprised if they had educated them selves before hand, by going to the Frontier Airlines web site and therefore not get blind sided at the gate. Southwest figured this out a long time ago not to trust others (companies)with there customer’s that way they know what they are getting when can only buy tickets on there web site. Frontier was rated #1 in customer satisfaction this last month and that can only come true, by very informed flyers. The unfortunate few that are not, well informed get burnt by the travel companies and then start spreading the hate about a very well loved Airline by the educated many.

  • William

    You do understand you are contradicting yourself. You first post a sign warning of the “scam” then you post another large picture of the counter after that saying there is no warning. And if you booked on orbitz, you must be one if those people who can’t or refuse to read. Because when you go through the Orbitz booking engine there is a a yellow highlighted area saying click here for the bag fees and bags Not included. If you click to read it, it will tell you about this “scam”. But hey go ahead and pay 400 dollars for your flight and free coke, versus 200 plus 35 to carry on if you follow the rules and 1.99 for a coke. Math and reading must have not been a strong subject for you.

  • Devin

    First off i am a Hub load master for Frontier Airlines. They do this so you book through Flyfrontier.com and they don’t have to pay a fee through the third party. Also you Southwest flyer’s, they have the oldest fleet out there in planes. Southwest also does not allow there tickets to be sold anywhere but on there website, no 3rd parties for them! Oh and by the way Southwest will start to charge for those bags that they say are free soon. They ran out of the fuel reserves and are losing money fast.

    What a lot of people don’t remember is YOUR GETTING ON A F**KING PLANE AND FLYING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HELLO????????? YOUR FLYING???????????? YOU SHOULD BE LUCKY YOUR NOT DRIVING ACROSS THE COUNTRY LIKE THEY DID IN THE PAST.

  • Devin

    Oh and Frontier was ranked Number 1 out of all the other airlines. Also Southwest loses your bags all the time, don’t say they don’t, I see there bags on the ground all the time because there workers don’t care.

  • Ray

    You idiot… It is $25.00 when you check in online. Which is what most of you sorry SOB do and print out your boarding pass and COMPLETELY IGNORE the prompt with information about the bag fee. YOU HAVE TO DECLINE THE FACT THAT U HAVE A CARRYON IN ORDER TO CHECK IN AT ALL…

  • Marcel
  • ejhanlon

    My son (16) was traveling from Salt Lake City to St. Louis with a plane change in Denver. I checked him in online and indicated that he would not be checking a bag. He got to the airport with suitcase in Salt Lake City and got on the plane. When he changed planes in Denver, they would not let him get on the plane without paying $100 for a carry on. I could not believe this! It is outrageous to strand a 16 year old like that, and then have to make them call their parents to pay $100 as ransom. They are worse than despicable.

    DON’T FLY FRONTIER!

  • Sandy Mark

    My daughter booked a flight and was in front of the ticket person at 520 for a 6 am flight and they made her reschedule her trip and charged her 50 more dollars. I then waited on hold for 25 mins to be hung up on after stating my cause. Then I waited 40 more minutes to be told by a supervisor that is their policy. Worst customer service I have ever heard of. Id say steer clear of them. I am saddened by it.

  • Michael Hobbs

    Due to traffic delays, I arrived at the frontier ticket counter 45 minutes before my 11:55 flight to Denver departed to find no one there. Tried the self check-in Kiosk which advised me to continue to the ticket counter. After waiting, finally an employee appeared that advised me I had missed my flight. He handed me a card with a # to call to reschedule my flight. It took forever to get the automated system to transfer me to customer service, and once it did, I was informed that there was a “high volume of callers” and the wait time was approximately 35 mins… After waiting on hold for 15 mins, I walked up to the Southwest ticket counter and purchased a ticket for the same time flight @ 11:55 to Denver so I could catch my connecting flight home. That was more than 20 min after frontier denied me. So once I get to Denver to check in to my connecting flight, I was once again denied access because I didn’t call ahead and let them know I would be taking the flight that I had booked. How could I call when I was on a flight? The “best” they could do for me was get me on a much later flight, which cost me another $100, plus had to pay again for my luggage. This entire flight cost is more that double what I originally paid to Orbitz. Customer relations is a joke! I learned my lesson, and I will be telling everyone I know to beware of frontier airlines.

  • Kurt

    I would like to know what it takes to get someone to contact you regarding lost baggage 3 days after you arrive at your destination? ( Denver Co. – Branson Mo. ).

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