Okay, so the title really says it all. Can a United guy find his Spirit? By now most of you probably know that I am a United/Star Alliance guy. Whenever possible I try to stick with UA or a Star Alliance carrier but I’m definitely not blindly loyal. If sticking with UA/Star Alliance means paying significantly more than I’m not opposed to jumping ship. How much more I am willing to pay to fly UA depends upon how many miles I would be leaving on the table otherwise, if I’m traveling alone or with the family (one ticket versus eight) and if the benefits of my Platinum status make it worthwhile to pay more. So, when I found myself needing to go to San Diego for the weekend, my first stop was of course united.com. When roundtrips on UA priced between $450-$515, my second stop was Kayak.com. A quick Kayak search revealed that Spirit (NK) had roundtrip flights between ORD and LAX for $178. Throw in a paid carry-on bag and four Big Front seats and it was a bit over $840 all in. Compare that with $1,800+ to fly United (with a dreaded red eye return flight) and the decision was clear. This United guy was going to see if he could find his spirit!
With minimal traffic that early in the morning, we were quickly lining up on the active runway and taking to the still dark skies above Chi-town.
Sunrise from 35,000 feet above from flight NK#737, ORD-LAX. One of the down sides of seat 1A is smudges on the window from the gate.
With only a short 3 hours and 31 minutes airborne, we were soon landing at LAX well ahead of schedule at about 15 minutes before 8 in the morning.
A LITTLE BIT OF CHILL TIME
Doors closed and…
After a short taxi, we took off at 12:06PM starting the 3 hour and 27 minute, 1,744 mile flight back to the frigid midwest.
The best sunsets are in order #1. From a plane, #2. On a beach. That is all.
It was a beautifully clear night in my sweet home Chicago and the pilot flying executed a wonderful landing. Welcome home!
So, did I find my Spirit? I would have to say yes. The flights were reasonably priced and the website was easy to use at booking. The app is rudimentary but functional and Spirit participates in the TSA Pre-Check program. The planes were nice and new and the crews were kind and professional. All flights were on-time (actually early) and I got there and back safely. What more could I ask for? I opened Free Spirit accounts for the four of us and if Spirit is offering a substantially better deal in the future I would not hesitate to fly them again. Thanks for reading!
While you’re here, check out some of our other trip reports: