Everyone Hates Spirit Airlines, Keeps Buying Tickets Anyway

Spirit Airlines is one of the fastest-growing airlines in the country. No, really. Sure, they’re a regular contender in our Worst Company in America tournament, and it seems like everyone who has tried the airline complains about the experience. But many of them can’t resist their rock-bottom fares, and just keep coming back.

NPR’s Planet Money economics reporting team did all of the normal stuff that reporters do when writing about an airline: they researched the company, and visited its headquarters to interview delusional CEO Ben Baldanza. To get there, the reporters sought the full Spirit experience. They boarded a Spirit flight from New York City to Fort Lauderdale, Florida and talked to passengers and staff.

They found that there are really three kinds of passengers on Spirit: those who know exactly what they’re getting into and enjoy the no-frills experience, those who don’t and are horrified to learn that they need to pay to put items in the overhead bins, and the hate-flyers.

See, many Spirit passengers know exactly what they’re getting into, complain about it, and then come back anyway. Team Planet Money calls these customers hate-flyers. You know, like hate-reading: visiting a website or picking up a magazine again and again because it makes you so mad that you get a perverse joy out of it. That’s how many of Spirit’s passengers feel about “the dollar store of the skies.

Spirit Airlines Taps A Nation Of Hate Fliers [NPR]

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  1. CzarChasm says:

    Researcher: The average radio listener listens for eighteen minutes a day. The average Howard Stern fan listens for – are you ready for this? – an hour and twenty minutes.
    Pig Vomit: How could this be?
    Researcher: Answer most commonly given: “I want to see what he’ll say next.”
    Pig Vomit: All right, fine. But what about the people who hate Stern?
    Researcher: Good point. The average Stern hater listens for two and a half hours a day.
    Pig Vomit: But… if they hate him, why do they listen?
    Researcher: Most common answer: “I want to see what he’ll say next.”

  2. GoldHillDave says:

    I must disagree with the headline. “Everyone” does NOT “keep buying tickets anyway”. I never have and never will.