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You Can Now Pay to Keep the Middle Seat Empty on This Budget Airline

Airports + Flying
by Suzie Dundas Mar 14, 2024

While it’s a permanent change, there’s only a small window for taking advantage of it at a low price.

Frontier Airlines, often considered the cheapest airline in the US, just announced a change most passengers will like. And while the change is expected to be around for the foreseeable future, there’s only a small window for travelers to take advantage of it at a budget price.

Frontier announced this week a new seating class called “Upfront Plus,” available on most flights departing after April 10. The new seating class promises customers “a window or aisle seat with extra legroom and a guaranteed empty middle seat, providing additional personal space and comfort at an exceptional value.” The new seating class now creates four different options for Frontier customers, joining standard seating with no perks, “preferred” seating with seats toward the front of the plane, and “premium,” with slightly more legroom.

The cost for Upfront Plus will vary based on flights, but travelers can upgrade their flights for $49 per person for flights during April. But you have to buy it by March 20, 2024.

While Upfront Plus is the first offering from Frontier to guarantee passengers an empty middle seat, it’s not the first airline to offer the perk. In summer of 2021, Lufthansa rolled out “Sleeper’s Row,” allowing travelers to buy an entire row of seats on long-haul flights, pending availability. Travelers can’t book “Sleeper’s Row” while buying tickets, however. It’s only available during check-in on flights with enough empty seats to accommodate one person per row. It’s also only available on flights of 11 hours or more, and more expensive than Upfront Plus, at roughly $179-$249 per flight.

Cheap flights on Frontier Airlines in April

frontier airlines middle seat - wing of plan

Photo: Gerisima/Shutterstock

Frontier Airlines is generally considered the most budget airline in the US, with flights to about 100 destinations from its hubs in Denver, Colorado, and Dallas, Texas. It keeps costs down by charging for amenities typically included with other airlines, such as checked bags, seat selection, and onboard drinks, and even going so far as encouraging passengers to tip flight attendants.

Flyers looking to take advantage of the new Upfront Plus seating in April may want to look into the following wallet-friendly destinations. Prices below reflect standard rates, so add $49 to the cost if you plan on buying Upfront Plus.

We hope you love the flights stays we recommend! Just so you know, Matador may collect a small commission from the links on this page if you decide to make a purchase. Listed prices are accurate as of the time of publication.

Pro tip: As long as you can add some extra time between your connection, you may be able to save money on international trips by flying on Frontier. If you find a cheap international fare from a major airport, you can book that ticket, then book a cheap connection on Frontier to reach that airport. You’ll need to exit security and go back in again, so you’ll want to make sure there’s plenty of time between flights. But that can sometimes be much cheaper than trying to book an international flight direct from a smaller airport.

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