Frontier Airlines Service to Guadalajara

Personal TVs within Frontier's fleet. Available on all seats.
Personal TVs within Frontier's fleet. Available on all seats.
Frontier's window seat and personal TV. Sorry for the blur.
Frontier's window seat and personal TV. Sorry for the blur.

Frontier Airlines (NASDAQ:FRNT), headquartered in Denver, Colorado and on the web at http://www.frontierairlines.com/ debuted non-stop service from its Denver hub to Guadalajara, Mexico in December, 2006. Officially scheduled to run one round trip from GDL to DEN on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, Frontier has made some adjustments since that inception. This traveler journeyed from Chicago Midway to Denver, and then switched onto the Denver to Guadalajara leg on an early Friday morning. I then traveled the same itinerary back to Chicago on a Tuesday afternoon and into the evening.

Frontier online booking was easy intuitive and user friendly. Confirmation arrived almost immediately via email with the credit card charge occurring within 24 hours.

Early morning service at the counter at Midway opened around 5am, and was neutral. No agent was particularly chipper nor grouchy, which may be a positive asset at 5am. As I was an early arrival, and third of fourth in line, I cannot comment on the speed of service provided to the crowd behind me. I reached my gate after security precautions with over an hour to spare.

Fliers were boarded rapidly, with the conventional call for young families coming first. As with most flights, I elected not to take up this offer, as I have found that the shorter amount of time my toddler is confined on a flight, the better. We generally board last.

My children were always greeted kindly and happily when they bounced on the aircraft at boarding, excited despite the fact that they are frequent fliers and had four different legs to this particular itinerary.

On all four legs we took off within 10 minutes of stated flight time. We were never delayed at loading nor on the tarmac.

Customers are treated at their seats with an in-seat, personal TV screen, which features over 20 TV channels, including TLC, Animal Planet, and MTV. Volume and channel are controlled through your arm rest, and headphones are handed out free of charge. The viewing is free during loading and before take off, but after you are airborne, the cost is $5. You may pay by swiping your credit or bank card directly at your seat. You are then asked by text on screen to either accept or reject the charges using the UP or DOWN buttons on your armrest. You may also purchase pay-per-view movies for $8. This service kept many passengers, especially children, entertained for long periods of time. The in flight entertainment was actually free on the international itineraries of the trip, because it was unavailable when we were over Mexican airspace.

Frontier sets themselves apart with a bit of branding humor by naming each aircraft after the picture of a wild animal on it's tail wing. For example, the plane with a deer on it's tale had a special name (such as Bob the Deer, or similar...I can't recall!). This little addition made the flight just a little more special with children ages 4-11, who enjoyed picking out their particular animal while waiting to board. The parent in me also enjoyed this little human touch.

Food service did not consist of any type of catered or warm food, as is stated online and in their in-flight magazine. Packaged foods such as those found in vending machines were handed out quickly and politely. This was the case on all four legs of my itinerary. Snacks ranged from packaged cookies to snack size Doritos. Beverages were always at the right temperature, although flight attendants varied on the amount given. Three out of four legs I was given an entire can of soda. My last leg I was given barely a cupful of coke.

Take offs and landings were always more than smooth. I was always impressed with the pilot's obvious skill.

Attendants were responsive, chatty and downright sweet on all four flights. International flights consisted of tourist and customs paperwork which was patiently explained multiple times in multiple languages. The attendants then took the extra time to aid each family individually in their needed language. Again, I want to note how very impressed I was at the patience and professionalism of the attendants helping with forms on the Denver-Guadalajara-Denver leg. Despite answering the same questions multiple times in two languages, the attendants seemed eager and happy to help. This incredible customer service is what prompted me to write this particular review and to highly recommend Frontier airlines for any traveler.

All our luggage was promptly and fully delivered on all four flights, in both countries, despite the plane change. On my Guadalajara to Denver flight, my new suitcase had a slice or tear near a seam. I was directed in Denver to make a claim at my final destination, Chicago.

In Chicago, at an 11pm arrival, I was politely greeted by the luggage office attendant and directed to fill out paperwork regarding the tear. I was told that I would be contacted the next day. Two days later a call came noting that the manager was unavailable, and that my claim would be handled in another 3-4 days. It has been 8 days since my trip, however, I am not too worried that my claim will eventually be handled. The stellar customer service training and very polite, patient, and well-informed employees have given me confidence that Frontier provides good training, a decent work environment and clear policies. I wholly and completely recommend Frontier and plan on booking through them again.

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