Freebird Flight Delay Coverage
It seems to be a growingly contentious debate these days. Some people swear they will never set foot on a U.S. budget airline because of the lack of free services and cramped seating, while others utilize their cheap fares to travel long/hard.
I have actually long been a supporter of flying budget airlines when it makes sense. For example, I have always had decent flights on Spirit Airlines and often find that I can get their Big Front Seat for less than a Basic Economy ticket on other airlines. If that is the case I choose Spirit 100% of the time.
Are Low Cost Carriers Reliable?
While Spirit has improved, the one big knock that many have on budget airlines is their lack of reliability. Some airlines like Frontier have rather poor on-time performance statistics and budget airlines in the U.S. often don’t have agreements with other airlines if something goes wrong. This can lead to you being stuck for long periods during irregular operations.
Of course if you travel enough then you know at some point things will go wrong. It happens when flying on the big 3 and it happens when flying everyone else. I live in Las Vegas where Allegiant, Spirit and Frontier all have a decent number of flights. Flying them from here is therefore a bit less scary considering they have a lot of crews/planes around and have more options to get passengers where they need to go if something goes wrong.
But I have an upcoming flight which has me a bit worried. In August I’ll be flying from Cincinatti (CVG) to Las Vegas (LAS). Delta, Allegiant and Frontier all have one flight a day with Frontier’s having the perfect timing. So what is the problem?
- Frontier only flies that flight once per day between those two airports, giving limited options for changing
- The flight leaves at 8pm, meaning a delay/cancellation could get exhausting
But the thing is the Frontier flight has the only direct timing that works and it is also cheaper. By the time I add in extra legroom seating, my bag and the ticket I’m still 30% cheaper than anyone else. On this flight though I decided to add another level of protection.
Freebird to the Rescue!?!
I am traveling with a friend who needs to get home and to be honest, these types of delays are always stressful, so we opted for another option that should make it a bit easier to ride roller coasters and have fun. We chose to also purchase Freebird.
Here is how it works:
So what happens if my Frontier flight is delayed 4+ hours or cancelled? With Freebird I would receive a link to book another flight right on the spot. No wondering if Frontier will get another plane. No worrying if I have to pay to fly another airline. It’s all covered and I like it.
Signing Up for Freebird
Freebird costs $19 per direction and is very easy to sign-up for. Simply head over to their site and input some basic information. They’ll need your flight info, name and date of birth along with a credit card. It takes only about 2 minutes and then you’ll have a confirmation that everything is set!
While I have never used Freebird (chime in with your experiences in the comments), it seems to work simply. They monitor your flight and as soon as it is delayed or cancelled they’ll send you a link to re-book. Here is how they describe it.
Of course I would love to use the service to fully review it, but don’t want any problems either! For me though the peace of mind is worth it given the frequency of this route and the airline. I also still got a great deal. With Freebird, upgraded seating, a bag and my ticket I was still 25% less than the comparable Delta flight which didn’t work timing wise.
Budget Carriers are an Option
It really is unfortunate how many people simply write off the budget airlines in the U.S. simply because of something they have heard. I honestly have never had a bad experience on these carriers and find their staff is often much more friendly. Either way if there is a problem I am now prepared and on top of that I’ll be flying home with plenty of legroom and comfort.
Have you ever used Freebird? Share your experiences in the comments!