WASHINGTON – Spirit Airlines has come under fire from the FAA for charging their passengers for oxygen in the cabin.
Spirit airlines was one of the first to implement an a la carte fee system, including charges for all checked baggage, reserving a specific seat, and, surprisingly, for carry-on baggage as well. However, now it seems that they may have overstepped their boundaries. They recently announced that they would begin charging passengers for oxygen!
“Allowing customers to pay for only what they want rather than forcing them to pay for unwanted services is desirable for consumers,” said Spirit spokeswoman Misty Pinson.
When booking your flight online, a tiny check box appears on the left hand side of the screen, allowing you to opt into the “EOP” (emergency oxygen program). If you do not check the box, the emergency oxygen mask will not deploy in the event of a drop in cabin pressure. Spirit claims that they are not jeopardizing the safety of their passengers because flight attendants explain that passengers may opt into the program during the pre-flight safety announcement. But how many of us actually read the fine print or listen to pre-flight safety announcements?
“I don’t see what the big deal is. It’s not like those things ever drop down in the middle of a flight anyway. I’m willing to take that risk,” said Joe Henderson, member of Spirit Airlines’ $9 Fare Club, “plus, you have the option to buy it at any time during the flight with the touch screen in front of you.”
Although Spirit is coming under heavy fire for this decision, they claim to remain committed to the a la carte pricing model. Dozens of new ideas are currently being developed in order to keep their prices as low as possible.
“Our goal is to make the base fare as close to zero as possible, giving more people access to travel rather than making it only a luxury for the wealthy,” Pinson said.
It is rumored that Spirit’s next step in their a la carte mega machine is to charge for seatbelts and install coin slots on the doors to the lavatories that only accept Canadian pennies. Tough luck Canada, I’m sure you can hold it, but at least you have Carrot Top. What’s next Spirit, are you going to charge us to have a pilot?