Spirit Adds $2 "Dept. Of Transportation Unintended Consequences Fee"

Fresh off fighting laws that require truth in advertising, Spirit Airlines, which hilariously dubbed itself the “most consumer-friendly airline,” is now taking a stand against another government regulation — one that requires airlines to allow passengers to change flights within 24 hours of booking without paying a penalty — by adding two dollars to everyone’s ticket.

Dubbed the “Dept. of Transportation Unintended Consequences Fee,” Spirit claims the two dollars will go to “cover the costs of this misguided and expensive regulation.”

“People love the idea of not having to commit to a reservation, but this regulation, like most, imposes costs on consumers,” says Spirit President and CEO Ben Baldanza. “Wouldn’t we all like to eat all we want and not get fat? Regulators like to try to sell the idea of this rule, but have ignored the cost impact to consumers. You simply can’t eat all you want without consequences.”

Not surprisingly, DOT Secretary Ray “Boyz in” LaHood disagrees with Baldanza’s assessment of things.

“This is just another example of the disrespect with which too many airlines treat their passengers,” says Ray. “Rather than coming up with new and unnecessary fees to charge their customers, airlines should focus on providing fair and transparent service — that’s what our common sense rules are designed to ensure.”

This is the second very public slapfight Spirit has gotten itself into in the last couple weeks. The airline recently lashed out at a newly enacted regulation that requires airlines to advertise the full airfare, including all known taxes and fees. Spirit claims that rule change was put in place so the government could hide (and hike) taxes.

In response, Sen. Barbara Boxer of California fired off a letter to Baldanza accusing the airline of misleading customers about the new regulations.

Just like when Verizon Wireless tried its hand at a $2 fee, we are compelled to include the following clip:

Spirit Airlines adding ‘unintended consequences fee’ [CNN]

Thanks to nandhp for the tip!