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  1. #1
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    Default A trip to Florida (FLL) on Spirit, by Hill Billy

    Late Friday night my son took me to the best airport in the DR, STI, (Santiago International). A clean, well, run facility.

    I was the one of the first three folks to arrive and had time to get the forms filled out (curiously, the are over by the entrance to Immigration, but they are there--a customs declaration and an international Embarkation/Debarkation form--so the time was not wasted. Also a bunch of former students welcomed me to the airport with yells of "Ehh, Profe!!" so I had someone to talk to..

    Check in was a breeze but yet another wait for Immigration to open up. And YES VIRGINIA, they do have people to collect your money if you overstayed your visa......, not that that was an issue for this old hound.

    The neat, very cool waiting room needs for its clients to have at least a light sweater...HB, being the well versed traveller, had a sweatshirt and his neck donut...so he pushed some of the seating over to a pillar and snuggled up and went to sleep, loudspeakers and all.

    An hour or so later, I came to and realized it was almost time to board. Uh Oh..no, the flight was delayed..Sor we waited for an hour more before boarding and all in all ended up getting to FFL at around 5:40-5:45 a.m.

    This was bad, because it meant that three flights arrived at the same time!! So immigration was a total cluster fu#k, as the saying goes. An hour later we got down to the baggage claim area and really had to look for my solitary bag. Eventually I found it..and daughter, bless her heart was waiting.

    45 minutes later we were home and having breakfast.

    All told, for $240 r/t it was worth it!! None of the hassles or delays were the airline's fault..and sheesh! at that price why bother to complain...I flew in one of the big leather seats in total comfort. When I boarded, I asked the flight attendant to give the the forms for landing since I wanted to sleep. I got them and the last thing I remember was taxiing out to take off...ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

    Typical Reverse Culture Shock. [email protected] highway so big. All the lights!! Traffic lights, ahh the lights....
    Walmart, Target! The Park with golf, fútbol and 6 baseball fields with lights!!!

    And that was just the first day.

    Happy May Day to you all, enjoy the holiday tomorrow.

    HB
    Moderator DR1.com

  2. Likes Major448, cobraboy, rice&beans liked this post
  3. #2
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    Glad to hear it was a good trip. I always wondered how Spirit was, someone mentioned it to me once but the flights were so cheap I envisioned myself sharing 10 feet of space with 20 chickens LOL

    SHALENA

  4. #3
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    Good Morning Professor HillBilly, once again you have managed to provide important information in an entertaining way. Thank you and have a good time.

  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hillbilly View Post
    All told, for $240 r/t it was worth it!!

    HB
    Great price!! When I shop Spirit they are about the same as AA and Jet Blue. Was that price some kind of special deal?

  6. #5
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    You have to constantly check Spirit their rates can change from week to week. And they really do offer some good rates when you catch them. They are normally who I use, they screw up sometimes but when I did have a proplem they quickly got me on another flight through another company same time and even gave me a refund for my fees and baggage within a 2 weeks of my complaint that I sent via email. Now don't get me wrong AA and the other are better in the sense that there are tv's to watch and you do at least get a free beverage and snack, but if you are just trying to get to somewhere for cheap then they do have some great deals again you just have to keep checking.

  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by SKing View Post
    Glad to hear it was a good trip. I always wondered how Spirit was, someone mentioned it to me once but the flights were so cheap I envisioned myself sharing 10 feet of space with 20 chickens LOL

    SHALENA
    LOL...not quite...that is the airline I used when I brought my animals

  8. #7
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    Glad to hear HB I'm actually catching the exact flight this sat morning from STI.

    To get the best rates on spirit you have to join the $9 fare club witch is $49 or $59 a year can't remember. They will have specials just for those members the fare comes out to more than $9 with taxes, fees etc. But I use it quite often to fly from to/from the states but they dont fly into POP so i usually go thought sdq or and now sti.

    Last flight was from FLL to SDQ was $72.00 total one way. And I bought the ticket about 6 days before I left.

  9. #8
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    I don't think 200-250 dollars is bad for a 2 hour plus international flight return. You can of course continue from Florida to other international destinations. Likely it would cost more to drive a car the same distance allowing for two passengers, overnight stop and car wear and tear.
    Yanandu

  10. #9
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    The trick with Spirit is to become a member of that 9 USD fare club (if you're going to be checking any luggage or carry any luggage on board). It's worth it, because you'll get the yearly fee back in about two flights and you also get discounts...and most importantly to plan ahead so you take as little luggage as possible as they will charge you for every little thing. Wanna take that carry on with you? There's a fee for that. Wanna reserve a seat in advance? There's a fee for that. Wan one of the larger front seats? There's a much larger fee for that...etc.

    Oh almost forgot. If you can stomach getting another credit card and you fly them enough you should get theirs as card members get to go through "the fast lane" - kind of like first class lanes back in the days.

  11. #10
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    If you are going to fly with Spirit more than once, it is worth it to get the $9 fare club. Not only are most of the cheapest fares available only to $9 members, there is a big difference in bag fees for members and non-members.

    On a side note, Spirit's SEC filings came out a few days ago. They earned $7.8 million net profit in the first 3 months of 2011, on $232.6 million in revenue. This likely makes them the most profitable airline in the United States! In comparison, Southwest, which is about twenty times the size of Spirit, made $5 million, JetBlue made $3 million, and all the majors lost big.

    For some reason, you don't hear about Spirit's profitability in the media. They are not a public company (yet) and the media loves to use them as a punching bag on slow news days. But they must be doing something right.

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