Is Spirit Airlines Safe? A Detailed Look at the Airline’s Safety Record and Measures

Is Spirit Airlines Safe

May 16, 2024 • Travel Tips • Views: 158

Spirit Airlines has been a popular choice for budget-conscious travelers since its inception in 1983. However, there have been concerns about the safety of this low-cost carrier, prompting many to question whether it is safe to fly with Spirit Airlines. While there have been some incidents in the past, it is important to look at the overall safety record of the airline to determine whether it is a safe option for travelers.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Spirit Airlines has a satisfactory safety record and meets all safety regulations. In fact, in 2019, the airline was named the most punctual airline in North America by FlightGlobal, a leading aviation news and data company. However, like any airline, Spirit has had its share of incidents, including a few minor accidents and a number of safety violations in the past. Despite these incidents, Spirit Airlines continues to operate safely and efficiently, with no major incidents reported in recent years.

Is Spirit Airlines Safe

Spirit Airlines Safety Overview

Spirit Airlines is a low-cost carrier that operates in the United States and the Caribbean. The airline has been in operation since 1983 and has grown to become one of the largest ultra-low-cost carriers in the world. Safety is a top priority for Spirit Airlines, and the airline takes several measures to ensure the safety of its passengers.

FAA Certification

Spirit Airlines is certified by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to operate flights in the United States. The FAA is responsible for regulating and overseeing all aspects of civil aviation in the United States, including the certification of airlines. The FAA certification process is rigorous and includes a thorough review of an airline’s safety management system, maintenance program, and pilot training program.

Is Spirit Airlines Safe

Safety Record and Ratings

Spirit Airlines has a good safety record and has not had any fatal accidents in its history. The airline has received an overall rating of 7 out of 7 stars from, which evaluates airlines based on their safety record and operational excellence. In addition, Spirit Airlines has received a four-star rating from Skytrax, a leading airline rating agency.

While Spirit Airlines has had some safety incidents in the past, such as emergency landings and smoke in the cabin, the airline has taken steps to address these issues and improve its safety procedures. The airline has also invested in new aircraft and technology to enhance its safety measures.

In conclusion, Spirit Airlines has a good safety record and is certified by the FAA to operate flights in the United States. The airline has received high safety ratings from reputable airline rating agencies, and has taken steps to improve its safety procedures.

Operational Reliability

When it comes to assessing the safety of an airline, operational reliability is a crucial factor to consider. This section will examine Spirit Airlines’ operational reliability, focusing on their on-time performance and cancellations and delays.

On-Time Performance

Spirit Airlines has a reputation for being one of the airlines with the lowest on-time performance in the United States. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Air Travel Consumer Report, Spirit Airlines had an on-time performance rate of 74.3% in 2023, which is below the industry average of 79.4%.

However, it is worth noting that on-time performance can be impacted by a range of factors, including weather conditions, air traffic control, and maintenance issues. Spirit Airlines has a modern fleet of aircraft, which can help minimize maintenance-related delays.

Cancellations and Delays

Spirit Airlines has also been criticized for its high rate of cancellations and delays. In 2023, the airline had a cancellation rate of 4.2%, which is higher than the industry average of 2.5%. Additionally, Spirit Airlines had an average delay time of 75 minutes, which is significantly higher than the industry average of 52 minutes.

It is important to note that Spirit Airlines operates a low-cost business model, which means they have a smaller fleet and fewer resources than larger airlines. This can make it more challenging for them to recover from disruptions such as weather events or maintenance issues.

In conclusion, while Spirit Airlines’ on-time performance and cancellation rates are below industry averages, it is important to consider the context of their low-cost business model and the potential impact of external factors on their operational reliability.

Fleet Information

Aircraft Maintenance

Spirit Airlines maintains a rigorous aircraft maintenance program to ensure the safety of its passengers. The airline’s maintenance program is in compliance with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the manufacturer’s guidelines. The airline has a team of highly qualified and experienced maintenance technicians who perform regular checks on the aircraft to ensure that they are in good condition.

The airline also uses advanced technology and procedures to detect any potential issues with the aircraft before they become a problem. The airline’s maintenance team is trained to identify and fix any issues quickly and efficiently. Additionally, the airline has a comprehensive safety management system that includes regular safety audits and inspections.

Airbus Fleet Details

Spirit Airlines operates an all-Airbus fleet, which includes the Airbus A319-100, Airbus A320-200, Airbus A320neo, and Airbus A321-200. The Airbus A320neo is the newest addition to the airline’s fleet, offering improved fuel efficiency and reduced emissions.

Is Spirit Airlines Safe

The airline’s Airbus fleet is known for its reliability and safety. The Airbus A320 family of aircraft has an excellent safety record, with over 8,000 aircraft delivered and over 200 million flight hours.

Spirit Airlines has a total of 157 aircraft in its fleet, with an average age of 6.9 years. The airline has a mix of owned and leased aircraft, with each aircraft meeting strict safety standards. The airline also has plans to expand its fleet in the coming years to accommodate its growing passenger demand.

In conclusion, Spirit Airlines maintains a high standard of aircraft maintenance and operates a modern and reliable Airbus fleet. The airline’s commitment to safety is evident in its rigorous maintenance program and comprehensive safety management system.

In-Flight Experience

Flying with Spirit Airlines can be a unique experience. While the airline is known for its low fares, it’s important to consider the in-flight experience before booking a ticket. Here’s what you can expect when flying with Spirit Airlines.

Cabin Comfort

Spirit Airlines’ cabins are designed to maximize space and efficiency. While the seats may not be the most comfortable, they are designed to provide ample legroom and seat pitch. The airline offers three seating options: Bare Fare, which includes a seat and nothing else; Standard, which includes a seat and one personal item; and Big Front Seat, which offers more legroom and a wider seat.

Amenities and Services

Spirit Airlines offers a range of amenities and services to make your flight more comfortable. For an additional fee, passengers can purchase food and drinks, including alcoholic beverages. The airline also offers Wi-Fi on select flights, allowing passengers to stay connected during their journey.

Passengers are encouraged to bring their own water bottle, as Spirit Airlines does not offer complimentary drinks. However, the airline does provide a range of snacks and other food items for purchase.

Overall, the in-flight experience with Spirit Airlines is designed to be efficient and cost-effective. While the airline may not offer the same level of luxury as some of its competitors, it provides a reliable and affordable option for travelers looking to get from point A to point B.

Is Spirit Airlines Safe

Baggage and Additional Fees

Baggage Fees

Spirit Airlines is known for its low fares, but it also charges additional fees for baggage. Passengers are allowed to bring one personal item on board for free, but carry-on bags and checked bags are subject to fees. The cost of a carry-on bag or checked bag varies depending on the route and whether the bag is purchased online or at the airport.

Passengers are encouraged to purchase baggage options online before arriving at the airport to save money. Spirit Airlines also offers bundle options that include baggage fees and other amenities such as seat selection and priority boarding.

Carry-On and Personal Item Policy

Spirit Airlines allows passengers to bring one personal item on board for free. The personal item must be able to fit under the seat in front of the passenger and cannot exceed 18 x 14 x 8 inches in size. Passengers can also bring a carry-on bag for an additional fee.

The carry-on bag must fit in the overhead bin and cannot exceed 22 x 18 x 10 inches in size. Passengers are allowed to bring a personal item and a carry-on bag on board, but they must pay for the carry-on bag.

Passengers should be aware that Spirit Airlines charges extra fees for many other services, such as seat selection, printing boarding passes at the airport, and even for water on board. It is important to review all fees and options before booking a flight with Spirit Airlines to avoid surprises and additional costs.

Pricing and Cost Efficiency

Understanding Low-Cost Fares

Spirit Airlines is known for its low-cost fares, which can be a great option for budget-conscious travelers. However, it’s important to understand that these fares come with some trade-offs. For example, Spirit charges for many services that other airlines include in their ticket prices, such as checked bags, carry-on bags, and seat assignments.

To get the lowest possible price on a Spirit flight, travelers should be prepared to travel light and forego some of the add-ons that other airlines include. It’s also important to book early, as fares tend to increase as the departure date approaches.

Extra Savings with Spirit Saver$ Club

For frequent Spirit Airlines travelers, the Spirit Saver$ Club can be a great way to save even more on flights. This membership program offers exclusive access to discounted fares, as well as other perks like waived baggage fees and priority boarding.

However, it’s important to note that the Spirit Saver$ Club does come with an annual fee, so travelers should carefully consider whether the benefits outweigh the cost. For those who fly Spirit frequently, the savings can be significant.

Overall, Spirit Airlines offers a cost-efficient option for travelers who are willing to forego some of the amenities offered by other airlines. By understanding the trade-offs and taking advantage of programs like the Spirit Saver$ Club, travelers can save money on their flights and enjoy a comfortable journey.

Booking and Check-In Procedures

Online and Airport Check-In

Spirit Airlines offers multiple options for check-in, including online and airport check-in. Online check-in is available 24 hours before the scheduled departure time and can be done through the Spirit Airlines website or mobile app. During online check-in, passengers can select their seats, purchase additional baggage, and print their boarding pass.

Is Spirit Airlines Safe

Airport check-in is also available for passengers who prefer to check-in in person. Spirit Airlines recommends arriving at the airport at least two hours before the scheduled departure time for domestic flights and three hours for international flights. Passengers can use the airport kiosks to check-in and print their boarding pass or can go to the Spirit Airlines check-in counter to check-in with an agent.

Boarding Process

Spirit Airlines has a unique boarding process that is designed to be efficient and quick. Passengers are assigned a zone number based on their seat selection, and the boarding process begins with Zone 1. Passengers with carry-on bags that fit under the seat in front of them can take advantage of Shortcut Boarding, which allows them to board with Zone 2 regardless of their assigned zone.

It is important to note that Spirit Airlines charges for all carry-on and checked baggage, so passengers should plan accordingly and purchase any additional baggage before arriving at the airport. Passengers who do not purchase additional baggage online or during check-in will be charged a higher fee at the airport.

Overall, Spirit Airlines’ booking and check-in procedures are straightforward and efficient, providing passengers with multiple options for check-in and a unique boarding process that prioritizes efficiency.

Customer Service and Support

Addressing Customer Concerns

Spirit Airlines has been known to receive complaints about their customer service in the past. Customers have reported long wait times on the phone, unresponsive emails, and difficulty getting their concerns addressed. However, Spirit Airlines has taken steps to improve their customer service and support. They have implemented a 24/7 customer service hotline and have increased their social media presence to better address customer concerns.

In addition, Spirit Airlines has made it easier for customers to access their support services by providing an online help center with frequently asked questions and answers. This has helped to reduce the number of calls and emails received by their support team, allowing them to focus on more pressing issues.

Improvements and Feedback

Spirit Airlines has also taken customer feedback into account to improve their customer service. They have made changes to their policies and procedures, such as allowing customers to make changes to their flights without a fee within 24 hours of booking. They have also introduced a new loyalty program, Free Spirit, which offers rewards and benefits to frequent flyers.

Is Spirit Airlines Safe

The Department of Transportation has recognized Spirit Airlines’ efforts to improve their customer service and support. In 2019, Spirit Airlines was ranked as the third best airline for customer service by the Department of Transportation’s Air Travel Consumer Report.

However, there are still instances where customers may experience poor customer service or misunderstanding. It is important for customers to be patient and persistent when addressing their concerns with Spirit Airlines. If a customer is still not satisfied with the resolution of their concern, they can file a complaint with the Department of Transportation.

Overall, while Spirit Airlines has had issues with customer service in the past, they have made significant improvements and continue to strive for better support for their customers.

Loyalty and Rewards Programs

Free Spirit Points

Spirit Airlines offers a rewards program called Free Spirit. Members can earn points by flying with Spirit Airlines or by making purchases with their Free Spirit credit card. Points can be redeemed for flights, seat upgrades, and other benefits.

Free Spirit members can earn points faster by reaching elite status. Elite members receive bonus points for flights and can also enjoy benefits such as free checked bags and priority boarding.

Travel Credit Card Benefits

Spirit Airlines also offers a co-branded credit card that allows cardholders to earn Free Spirit points on everyday purchases. In addition to earning points, cardholders can also enjoy benefits such as free checked bags, priority boarding, and discounted award flights.

The Spirit Airlines credit card also comes with a sign-up bonus, which can be a great way to quickly earn points. Cardholders can also earn bonus points for making purchases with select merchants.

Overall, Spirit Airlines’ loyalty and rewards programs provide a great way for frequent travelers to earn and redeem points for flights and other benefits. The Free Spirit credit card is a great option for those who want to earn points on everyday purchases and enjoy additional benefits when flying with Spirit Airlines.

Travel Destinations and Partnerships

Domestic and International Routes

Spirit Airlines flies to over 60 destinations across the United States, Caribbean, and Latin America. Some of the popular domestic destinations include New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Miami. The airline also serves many international destinations, including Cancun, San Juan, and Santo Domingo.

Spirit Airlines operates a point-to-point network, which means that it does not have a hub-and-spoke system like other major airlines. This allows the airline to offer non-stop flights to many destinations, making it a popular choice for travelers who want to avoid layovers.

The airline has a fleet of modern aircraft, including Airbus A320s and A321s. These planes are equipped with comfortable seats, and the airline offers a range of in-flight amenities, including snacks and beverages for purchase.

Is Spirit Airlines Safe

Interline Agreements

Spirit Airlines has interline agreements with several other airlines, including American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and United Airlines. These agreements allow passengers to book flights on multiple airlines with a single ticket, making travel more convenient.

Interline agreements also allow passengers to check their bags through to their final destination, even if they are flying on multiple airlines. This means that passengers do not have to worry about collecting and re-checking their bags during layovers.

Overall, Spirit Airlines has a strong network of destinations and partnerships that make it a convenient and reliable choice for travelers.

Comparing Spirit with Other Airlines

Budget vs. Legacy Carriers

Spirit Airlines is a budget carrier that operates in the United States and the Caribbean. It competes with other budget airlines such as Frontier and Allegiant, as well as legacy carriers such as United, Delta, and American Airlines. While budget carriers like Spirit offer lower fares, they often charge extra fees for things like checked bags, seat selection, and onboard refreshments. Legacy carriers, on the other hand, typically include these amenities in the ticket price.

When comparing Spirit with legacy carriers, it’s important to consider the overall value of the ticket. Spirit’s base fares may be lower than those of legacy carriers, but once you add in the extra fees, the total cost may end up being similar. Additionally, legacy carriers often offer more flight options, larger networks, and better customer service than budget carriers.

Service and Value Comparison

When it comes to service, Spirit Airlines has a reputation for being no-frills. The airline offers a basic level of service and amenities, with additional options available for purchase. While this may be a downside for some travelers, it can be a benefit for budget travelers who only want to pay for what they need.

In terms of value, Spirit’s low fares make it an attractive option for budget travelers. However, the airline’s extra fees can add up quickly, so it’s important to carefully consider the total cost before booking a flight. Legacy carriers may offer more amenities and better service, but they often come with a higher price tag.

Overall, when comparing Spirit with other airlines, it’s important to consider your individual travel needs and budget. While Spirit may be a good option for some travelers, others may prefer the added amenities and service provided by legacy carriers.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the safety rating of Spirit Airlines?

Spirit Airlines has a safety rating of 6/7 according to Airline Ratings, an independent airline safety and product rating website. The rating takes into account several factors such as the airline’s accident record, operational excellence, and audit results.

How does Spirit Airlines’ safety record compare to other airlines?

Spirit Airlines’ safety record is comparable to other low-cost carriers in the United States. However, it is important to note that the airline has had a few incidents in the past, including a runway overrun in 2019 and an emergency landing in 2018.

What measures does Spirit Airlines take to ensure passenger safety?

Spirit Airlines has several safety measures in place to ensure the safety of its passengers. These include regular aircraft maintenance, pilot training programs, and strict adherence to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations.

How frequently do Spirit Airlines flights get cancelled?

According to data from the U.S. Department of Transportation, Spirit Airlines has a cancellation rate of approximately 2%. This is slightly higher than the average cancellation rate for all U.S. airlines.

Has Spirit Airlines made any significant safety improvements recently?

In 2020, Spirit Airlines implemented a new safety management system (SMS) to enhance its safety culture and improve safety performance. The airline also invested in new safety technology and equipment to further improve safety standards.

What are the common concerns passengers have about flying with Spirit Airlines?

Some of the common concerns passengers have about flying with Spirit Airlines include the airline’s strict baggage policies, additional fees for amenities, and limited legroom on flights. However, these concerns do not necessarily impact the safety of the airline’s operations.


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