Mastering The Art of Chutzpah and Doublespeak

I just got a very interesting email from the CEO of Spirit Airlines.

In it, he describes how he is going to save me money.

The way I will save money, is by joining his $9 Club for $45. As soon as I become a member, I will be entitled to bring a second carry-on bag on board for just $20 instead of $45 like all the other schmucks! Fantastic! Thats a round trip savings of $50, and a net savings of $5!

Of course, I could stick with Delta…the airline that does not charge me anything to bring two bags on board, and who also today announced a new speedy boarding perk for Medallion members.

But what a great email!  Personalized and everything to me… a “Valued Customer”!

To our valued customers,

We have all seen how carry-on baggage has gotten out of control.  Longer security lines and boarding process, injuries due to overcrowded overhead bins, delayed flights and passenger frustration has become commonplace.

At Spirit, we are always looking for new ways to save you money and improve the customer experience.  We recently announced our latest innovation, which is designed to relieve the carry-on crisis, saving you time and money.

Our solution to the carry-on crisis:

  1. Lowered fares
  2. Lower checked bag fees
  3. Give everyone a free personal item allowance
  4. Allow customers to carry on an additional bag for a fee and give them
    priority boarding so they have time and space to stow their extra bag

Everyone Wins!

  1. We expect total prices to be lower
  2. Security lines will move faster
  3. The boarding process will be smoother
  4. Deplaning will be faster
  5. Passenger and employee safety is improved with less over-stuffed bins

What to expect for travel after August 1st:

  1. We have introduced PENNY PLUS™ fares available to our $9 Fare Club members** that are 1¢ each way plus fuel, taxes and fees*.  If you are not already a member, click here to join.
  2. We have lowered checked bag fees for $9 Fare Club members.  A family of four checking four bags round-trip will save $80.  Double the cost of being a $9 Fare Club member.  Another reason to join now.  Click here to join.
  3. You can bring a FREE personal item onboard, such as a purse, briefcase, backpack or laptop computer.  Other exceptions are:  assistive devices, medicine, umbrella, outer garments (coats, hats, wraps), camera, car seat/stroller, infant diaper bag, reading material for the flight, or food for immediate consumption.
  4. If you choose to bring an extra carry-on bag, you may do so for $20 if purchased online as a $9 Fare Club member or $30 online, at the airport ticket counter or kiosk for non-members.  If you choose to wait until the gate to pay, the fee will be $45 which is not preferred since it will slow the boarding process.
  5. Shorter, faster security and boarding lines.  Less frustration while boarding and deplaning.  Fewer delays.
  6. Happier customers that pay less!

See you onboard soon!  We’ll keep working to improve your experience and lower your fare.

Ben Baldanza
President and Chief Executive Officer
Spirit Airlines

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One Response to “Mastering The Art of Chutzpah and Doublespeak”

  1. Grace Dunklee Cohen, Anthorne Group PR on April 13th, 2010:

    I’m with you, Bryan. I didn’t miss airline foode when they cut that-and I’m okay with picking up a deli sandwich made the way I like to take on board. But I most often travel with a roll-on full of camera gear, so I really need to check luggage so it’s Delta or Southwest for me. And I’m sure that everyone who skis, snowboards or plays golf is going to be loyal to whoever doesn’t charge for checked baggage. But I just heard that a small Florida-based airline plans to charge for carry-on baggage. What’s with that??

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