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Frontier in ULCC terminal in AUS: Where else?

Frontier in ULCC terminal in AUS: Where else?

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Old Jan 8, 19, 3:41 am
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Frontier in ULCC terminal in AUS: Where else?

So i got the surprise when looking on the AUS website that F9 is now in the South Terminal which is basically the ULCC terminal, no jet bridges, little food and basic amenities. Its also 15-20 minutes from the main terminal. Ill assume that this is a cost thing because AUS just finished a 9 gate expansion in the main terminal. Where else is this going on, or is AUS the only place in ths US. Im not talking about TTN where the whole airport is limited services but special ULCC terminals like in AUS
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Old Jan 8, 19, 2:56 pm
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Thanks for the heads up. Obviously, this is a disincentive to fly Frontier to AUS. I haven't been to that airport in years (it always seems like I wind up driving from IAH). How much hassle is to, say, rent a car if you arrive at the Frontier terminal?
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Old Jan 8, 19, 7:42 pm
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Yep, it is a disincentive, especially if you are renting a car. In order to rent a car you must take the shuttle to the main terminal. Luckily, the rental car area is in the parking garage across the street from baggage claim. So after that you just need to go into the check in area and then use the elevators to get to the arrivals level and cross the street, but you will need to add 15 - 20 minutes to your travel time. Plus anytime you have to wait for the bus at the south terminal. Luckily for me relatives always pick me up. In AUS defense though not all airports have on-site car rental and i wouldnt want to be standing on the boarding ramp for 5 minutes when its 105 degrees. Its going to have to be alot cheaper flying F9 than another airline now when im going to AUS. Luckily i can also fly into SAT and it will become my preferred airport when flying Frontier
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Old Jan 9, 19, 9:49 pm
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Wow, they don't have Jetways in AUS?! I would think TSA and DHS would really frown on letting any pax onto the ramp if they don't have to (and there's really no excuse except for the smallest airports). From an anti-terror perspective is it really a smart idea to have pax near the outside of a plane?

I mention this because the original post reminded me of Kuala Lumpur's airport. Early this century they opened a shiny new main terminal to get on a similar footing to Changi in Singapore and try to raise the city's profile and get more flights.

But about the same time Air Asia, which started in Malaysia, started growing by leaps and bounds. It's a very Spirit-like charge-for-everything no-frills outfit, and at first it was using gates at KUL like any other airline. They needed more gates and the other airlines (especially MH) must've been harumphing at the idea they get to use the same airport, so the LCCT was born. It was across the field but took 20 minutes by bus shuttle to reach, and at first the rail express didn't reach it (now it does).

It always seemed like they had to go out of their way to make the LCCT downscale in size, facilities, etc., and it wasn't second nature to do it like that. They had to TRY to make it more of a pain to use it (though part of the problem was Air Asia kept growing and the LCCT was too small almost from the start).

There were no jetways and I remember flying in when there must have been 10 planes parked and literally hundreds of people walking across the ramp to the walkways from the various planes. All I could think would be how easy it'd be for someone to get loose and come into contact with a plane (to plant a plastic explosive?) and maybe not even be noticed. I thought there was no way they'd allow that kind of chaos scene in the U.S. (9/11 had happened only a few years earlier).

I strongly suspect that if AUS is downscaling the experience on the airport side it's because of pressure from other airlines. Are they charging Frontier significantly less to use the airport in return? Yeah, riiiiight. A good contrast might be FLL, which for years was bursting at the seams at Concourse H (the Black Hole of Calcutta) with Spirit but has now added gates in G and a connecting walkway. With Jetways.
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Old Jan 10, 19, 1:48 am
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The main terminal at AUS is bursting at the seams (no, the new gates aren't ready yet) and Frontier wants to operate a much bigger schedule than they have in the past. The South Terminal has three stands and Frontier can basically do whatever they want schedule-wise there...at a lower price per passenger than the main terminal...because the only other airlines there operate very light schedules...one is Allegiant and Frontier appears to have chased Allegiant off of multiple routes as Frontier has expended. For example AUS-TPA shutting down AUS-PIE.

When I have time I'll see how many flights per day Frontier is running at peak this year but my guess is 10-15 across 20 destinations. And that's the stuff they have on the books thusfar; as they get used to that terminal they might add another sub-daily destination or three.

One interesting thing to follow will be the interplay between Frontier and Spirit. Spirit actually picked the main terminal, and will be running 8 flights per day out of there as of February, hitting 9 per day in May. They compete with Frontier on MSY, DEN, MCO, LAS, ORD, and DTW. Frontier looks like they've retimed some of their flights to somewhat stay out of Spirit's way while being a more more attractive than, say, a 5:30a departure, but it's gonna be a fun fight.

As for ground boarding, there are still stands for that in DEN and MIA, from personal experience, that are connected to the main terminal. Folks are already past the TSA checkpoint anyway so it's not like a jet bridge is any more sterile anyway.
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Old Jan 12, 19, 2:02 am
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Oops, I was in AUS back in October flying on AA, saw that I was out of gate 32 and incorrectly figured the gates were complete. I've also had the pleasure of the longest of the long jetways (i believe 3A) when flying on Frontier a year ago. Then this makes sense, though it is going to make me evaluate my choices and family members are going to be warned
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Old Yesterday, 7:58 pm
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DCA

F9 flies into the old / "ULCC" terminal at DCA. Only one gate for F9, most other gates are for WN. Air Canada has one or two gates. Biggest drawback there is that the food is limited but still there is food to purchase. Overall with DCA being not an overly huge airport, being at this terminal is not a substantial disadvantage IMHO. In fact, given the large portion of WN / F9 flights, my limited sampling indicates lower pre-check percentage of passengers ... whereas the "main" terminal with DL / UA / AA can be quite crowded even in pre-check lines.

Last edited by DarkHelmetII; Yesterday at 7:58 pm Reason: typo
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