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Spirit Airlines vs Southwest Airlines. Which is better?

Spirit Airlines vs Southwest Airlines. Which is better?

Spirit vs Southwest. Which is better?


Industry: U.S. Domestic Airline Travel

Target Market: Budget Domestic Air Travelers

Industry Leader: Southwest Airlines

Challenger: Spirit Airlines


Air travelers are always searching for travel deals. And every so often, there’s a deal too difficult to resist. There are, however, 2 airlines commonly known for their relatively affordable travel cost all year round. They are almost always less expensive than other airlines, if booked under the same circumstances and parameters (day of the week, advance time, etc.).

Southwest carries more domestic flight passengers than any other airline, however Spirit’s base domestic flight fare prices is one of the lowest, if not the lowest, in the industry. Please notice I stated ‘base fare’ because there’s a catch.


  • Spirit vs Southwest Measurable (1):

Southwest low  ‘base’ fare allows 2 check bags (maximum of 50 pounds each), 1 carry-on back and 1 personal item. While,  Spirit’s low ‘base’ fare allows only one personal item.

Some budget travelers may be content with one personal item, however, many others are not. Even if the trip is only for a couple of days. We want travel deals, but we also want adequate change of clothing and personal items. All of which may not fit into a small bag.

Based on my personal experience, using the same parameters, Spirit Airlines turned out to be more expensive when I factored in two (2) 50-pound bags and 1 carry-on item to my booking, plus in-flight drinking water. The latter is another story. This may not always be the case, however.



    • Spirit vs Southwest Measurable (2):

    Did you know Spirit Airlines charges $10 to print a boarding pass at the ticket counter service at the airport? Customers are encouraged to use the mobile check-in App or print boarding at a self-service kiosk, or at home. Southwest Airlines offers this service for free at both the kiosk and ticket counter. This is a textbook example of inconvenience and alienation of the older population, who may need customer service assistance with check-in and boarding.



    Can Spirit Airlines compete with Southwest? At the end of the day, it’s not only about low prices, it is also about low prices and convenience. Not either, or.




    Levine-Weinberg, A. (2017, February 22). Spirit Airlines Takes on Southwest Airlines in Its


      Next Round of Expansion. Retrieved March 02, 2018, from


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