Maya Kachroo-Levine
November 05, 2018

When deciding whether or not to grab that Allegiant Air flight deal, you first need to ask: Is it safe to fly Allegiant Air?

In April, 60 Minutes aired a special about the airline’s not-so-hot safety record, reporting that 25 of their planes experienced some sort of mechanical issue in the last two years. (They also reported that Allegiant only has 99 planes, meaning nearly 25 percent of them have experienced an issue that could correlate to a passenger’s safety.) However, this doesn’t necessarily mean the airline is less safe, but rather means that Allegiant reports more events than competitors because their aircrafts tend to be older, and therefore need maintenance checks more often.

Related: Should You Buy That Cheap Spirit Airlines Ticket?

On the plus side, Allegiant is actually updating their fleet to include newer airbuses. The only problem is while bringing in new aircrafts, Allegiant has had to cancel flights because their new planes are arriving behind schedule.

While, admittedly, the first half of 2018 was a bit rough to Allegiant Air, it’s still a U.S. Department of Transportation certified airline that’s been operating since 1997. Allegiant currently flies within the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. Their direct flights can be super affordable, and they’re even branching out and opening a hotel in Florida in 2019. If you’re wondering whether or not to hop on an Allegiant Air flight, you first want to know what you’re getting into. Are you actually more likely to be delayed because they’re looking into an engine issue? We looked through what passengers had to say about flying Allegiant, and here’s what you need to know before booking that ticket.

Related: Should You Buy That Cheap WOW Air Ticket?

Will I be delayed on Allegiant?

“They kept us waiting for hours while they were seeing whether they could fix the plane,” said David F on Yelp. “After many hours they canceled the flight. As a way to make up for our loss they gave us a $100 voucher which was only good for 1 year.”

David M added that their flight schedules aren’t necessarily well-equipped to handle delays or cancellations. “The schedules are such that canceled flights have the potential to create big messes,” he wrote on TripAdvisor.

David M continued to say that, “I'm willing to use them again for nonstop trips to desirable areas away from major cities--backcountry Pennsylvania, Vermont, New Hampshire, upstate NY, etc.”

Are Allegiant flights convenient?

Patrons flying to smaller airports, like the ones David M mentioned, appreciate that Allegiant Air provides direct service to places like upstate New York or Providence, Rhode Island.

“This is our third trip with Allegiant Air and we couldn't be happier. Our flights departed from Providence, RI which is a 90-min drive from home but totally worth it. The airplane is simple and the seats do not recline but their prices are really accessible and the flight time to Clearwater airport is relatively short at 2:40hrs,” Hill R wrote on TripAdvisor.

However, you might need to be flexible if you’re going to cash in on Allegiant’s direct flight deals. “There have actually been times in the past where I considered flying Allegiant to Los Angeles. Sadly this never happened because of the airline’s limited flight schedule. You may need to adjust your travel plans a bit if you really want to save with Allegiant,” Kyle Burbank wrote on Moneyat30.com.

One convenient perk Allegiant has going for it is that you can change your flights without paying a fortune. “Allegiant offers a service called Trip Flex that allows you to change your flight plans without incurring change fees. For my flight, this option would have been $26,” said Burbank.

Am I risking my Allegiant flight getting canceled?

Edgar wrote on Airline Ratings that Allegiant canceled his flight prematurely before Hurricane Irma. “Abandoning your passengers that are facing a hurricane is inexcusable!!” he said. “They canceled the flight from Jacksonville FL to St Louis 36 hours before the airport shut down. All other airlines flying out of JAX that day completed their flights out. The weather was actually beautiful that day.”

Is flying with Allegiant Air comfortable?

The strike against Allegiant in the comfort category is similar to the strike against most budget airlines: The seats aren’t easy on the back, and there’s no complimentary beverage service. (Edgar said he’ll “forgive the ‘charge for everything’” method, which includes “paying for a drink of water.”)

“Airfare was competitive but the good news ends there. Seats were the most uncomfortable ever. It was a new plane, but the seats did not recline nor were they padded properly. At each end of our flight there were serious delays with our luggage,” said Rob M on TripAdvisor.

Do I have to pay for a carry-on with Allegiant Air?

Yes, both a carry-on and a checked bag will cost you. However, you’re typically allowed to bring a purse (or small personal item) that fits under the seat in front of you without paying for it. “In other words, if you want to be able to store your item in the overhead, you’ll need to pay up,” said Burbank.

He continued, “They advise that rates are far lower when you pay your luggage fees in advance, rather than wait until you’re at the airport. In my test case, a carry-on would cost $18 each way while each item of checked luggage would add $25 to the fare. Apparently, each of these fees would go up to $100 if done at the airport.”

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