Why I'm So Excited About Frontier's Incredible Elite Status Match

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Update: This offer is no longer available. Frontier extended its status match for applications through December 31, 2020 (originally December 1). This post has been updated to reflect this extension.

Are you looking for inexpensive domestic and limited international airfare? Is getting from Point A to Point B on nonstop flights a priority? Do you have friends or family with whom you'd like to travel, but they just aren't into miles and points?

If your answer is “yes” to any of the previous questions, you have until December 31, 2020 to get your application in for the easiest and most valuable airline status match I've seen.

Frontier's Status Match Offer

Frontier elite status match

If Frontier Airlines (IATA code F9) serves your home airport, you'll definitely want to look into this opportunity. Frontier is allowing a status match up to its Elite 20K, Elite 50K, or Elite 100K MyFrontier Status. We'll get into why you should be looking shortly. But first, let's check out who'll qualify.

Who Can You Match From?

Frontier elite status match from other airlines chart
Which airline status do you have?

Frontier is matching elite status from seven different U.S.-based airlines.

Upon first glance, I assumed I'd qualify for Elite 20K. I'm a United MileagePlus Premier Silver as a result of achieving Marriott Titanium Elite status. However, I noticed that you could also match from Southwest Rapid Rewards as well. I'm not A-List with Southwest, but I was pleasantly shocked to learn that Companion Pass is considered top-tier by Frontier!

And why not? Companion Pass holders are likely to be the exact people who Frontier is looking to attract. Last year I mentioned that Southwest moved the goalpost for Companion Pass. Thankfully, points earned from signup bonuses and everyday spending on the Southwest co-brand cards still count towards the Companion Pass. So if you time your application right, you can make significant progress towards the qualification requirements by opening a new credit card.

Looking for tips about matching and score elite status? There's probably no better group of people to discuss this with than Award Travel 101. On Award Travel 101, we are always looking for ways to improve travel experiences! If you haven't joined Award Travel 101, you should. We already have lots of interesting data points in the thread that will help answer many of your questions about this Frontier status match.

Why You Should Consider a Frontier Status Match

You might be wondering why Frontier elite status would be useful. Heck, you may be wondering why you should even consider flying Frontier. Well, check out these elite status benefits!

Get these Frontier elite status benefits through a status match
Frontier's elite status benefits

As a Frontier Elite 20K or Elite 50K member, you'll enjoy a host of benefits. However, Elite 100K is where things get really interesting! Free carry-on bags, priority boarding, and family (points) pooling are all nice, but Elite 100K also provides a complimentary Discount Den Membership (typically $59.99 annually). This alone will save you a couple of bucks per ticket—and sometimes much more.

However, the most valuable perk is Family Status (the Works bundle). With this, you can score the following benefits for you and up to eight other members (family or friends).

Frontier's add-on bundles

Putting These Elite Perks into Practice

As an Elite 100K member, you receive flight flexibility and refundability—even on the least-expensive fares! That means you're eligible to get all of these elite benefits on bargain-basement airfares. Let's take a look at a couple of examples.

Flying Our Family of Four to Florida for Under $88 All-In

Frontier is known for offering some spectacular deals. For example, I can book flights from my home airport of Cleveland to Tampa for $10.98 per person each way.

Frontier elite status can be a huge help in saving on cheap flights
That's the total price for FOUR passengers!

Thus, I can fly my family of FOUR each way on a (fully refundable/changeable/cancelable) nonstop fare to Florida. Not only that but I can pick the best available seats and take as many bags—despite paying just $22 round-trip per person. Getting all of these benefits would cost other families $1,287.80 round-trip. However, it costs my family just $87.84 round-trip!

Bundled fare benefits

Plus, if the trip didn't work out, I could change or cancel for a full refund as long as I cancel more than 24 hours ahead of scheduled departure. But even if I bailed on the trip inside 24 hours, losing $88 doesn't hurt much!

Explore Frontier's Route Map to Find Cheap Flights

To determine if its route network works for you, Frontier has a handy way to give you ideas of what's possible. Head to the Flights From City page and select your home airport to see the best deals from your city:

Use Frontier's website to easily find cheap getaways

Here's another example. Let's say I wanted to visit Las Vegas for a few days.

Basic R/T fare to Vegas

The next second-cheapest flight on those same dates is from another discount carrier. But the price isn't even in the same ballpark.

Feel the burn!

We haven't even begun to discuss baggage and seat selection fees on these carriers yet. You can see the fare below is anything but basic!

It may be cheap, but it's not basic!

With Frontier's elite status, concerns over the add-on fees when flying an ultra-low-cost carrier becomes a distant memory!

Although you can't use Chase Travel Portal to book Frontier flights, you can use the Chase Pay Yourself Back tool to reimburse other types of purchases. You can wipe out $27.81 of qualifying purchases for just 1,854 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points if you have a Chase Sapphire Reserve®. That's why I’m so excited about flexible point currencies right now!

How to Complete the Frontier Status Match?

If you plan on flying Frontier even once through December 31, 2021, this status match should be on your radar. However, you don't have long. Applications are due by December 31, 2020.

This isn’t a free status match. Frontier charges a $49 application fee to “verify and process your status match.” But first, if you aren't a member, you'll need to join Frontier Miles first.

Steps to submit a Frontier elite status match
Almost done!

Next, fill out the Fast-Track to status and submit.

Confirmation that I submitted my Frontier elite status match
Success!

I received the approval for my status match within 36 hours of application. Several Award Travel 101 members reported receipt of confirmation in just over 30 minutes while some reported 48 hours.

Final Approval

This $49 charge likely won't qualify for an American Express Airline Fee Credit as Frontier uses a 3rd party. I called in for a manual override, but I was told that I'd need to wait 14 days before they can make any manual adjustments. So, YMMV (Your Mileage May Vary).

Final Thoughts

This is a gamechanger in my book for domestic and even some limited international leisure destinations. Even if you aren't a huge fan of Frontier, you could still get substantial value with just one flight.

One of the biggest complaints from travelers flying discount carriers is the surprise fees. With this offer, you can reduce or eliminate the fees entirely! If you can match to its Elite 100K top-tier status you can add flight refundability to your list of benefits. This might be useful as a placeholder while searching for alternative options or if you just want to lock in a cheap flight but aren't sure you can actually go.

Frontier is far from perfect, and you may encounter some extra hassle in the event of a schedule change or cancellation. Without the larger network, interruptions may cause havoc to your trips. However, no airline is immune from changes and cancellations at this point, so keep that in mind as well.

Who knows? You might even be able to leverage this with one of the other carriers at some point too!

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Comments

  • Great deal signed you same day, got confirmation and paid the $49 to match my United 100K status. After string of emails they have yet to change my status. Calls to solve problem all get routed to Singapore. They are clueless and there is no one to speak to live. Enjoy flying Frontier a few times a year and was looking forward to perks, Sad!

  • It worked! Created Frontier account today and matched Southwest Companion Pass to get Fronteir 100K. Process took 5 minutes and email with match was less than an hour. Looks like ticket prices are low and 100K saves all the fees. Thanks!

  • Wow never thought Frontier would be one do a status match, but great idea. Will definitely give it a shot and save a few $$!

  • Ok I can see why you’d get excited about this if you have elite status to match. Frontier really isn’t where I am so nothing too exciting for me. Those are some good benefits. Something to consider if you do travel with them or could travel with Frontier.

  • Agree. It is easy to utilize if Frontier is available for you.

  • I liked Frontier much better before they changed their business model to be a low-cost, pay for all amenities carrier.

  • No thanks. In the dozens of people I know that have taken Frontier flights – there are very few that have come away satisfied with the experience.

  • If only they fly out of my home airport. I have to stick to the legacy airlines since frontier does not serve my area.

  • Frontier has a status match programme!? Who knew…

  • Can you book flights for family and friends on Frontier, even if you don’t go on the trip?

  • No Thanks. I have flown several flights on Frontier since it became an ultra-low cost carrier. I find the seats and overall experience much more uncomfortable than spirit and ryanair, airlines I’ve also flown several times. On frontier, it seems like the seats are purposely designed to torture you.

  • Thank you for this article. I’m sure I’m not the only one surprised that Frontier has a status match program!

  • slee.can@gmail.com says:

    Have not flown Frontier because it meant not enjoying the perks of my status. With this status match, I would consider Frontier as a viable option.

    • Joe Petrovic says:

      It certainly should be considered if you think you’ll fly them. In my case, just one one-way flight will easily pay for this.

  • Anyone know whether or not:

    (1) Frontier matches from provisional AA status obtained from Hyatt Explorist/Globalist?
    (2)Any airlines match FROM Frontier status?

  • Sent the match for AA EP. $49 is cheap to have other options flying out of NJ. Showing $11 one way from EWR to many destinations in Florida. Really great for weekend Florida get-a-way. Thanks for the tip. If I can get extra legroom w/ Elite 100K status, that would be awesome.

    • Approved for Elite100K. Only took 1 hour. I have TTN & EWR within one hour drive from home.

      • Joe Petrovic says:

        You do get the extra legroom seats (if available at booking) with Elite 100K. You can get them by selecting a seat from row 1, 2, or 3. I hope you enjoy it.

  • I wish Frontier flew more routes and morenin the south USA. They need more destinations. I can never seem to catch a flight with them

    • Joe Petrovic says:

      From my home airport, they serve a decent set of markets. This won’t offer a ton of value for people whose hometown is not served.

  • Any idea what they are doing with this third party to verify your status

    • Great question. The closest answer we can find is: “The offer is administered by Loyalty Data Co Pte Ltd (LDC), a Singapore entity and “Loyalty Status” will appear on your bank statement for any payments made under the offering. The application fee is non-refundable and you agree that it covers expenses related to verifying your Status online and administrative costs incurred in administering the offering”

  • Erwin W Chen says:

    This a great perk. Thanks!

  • Thanks for sharing this is great. I am a little disappointed that they are charging $50 to do this instead of just offering it for free like other airline’s status match programs.

    • Joe Petrovic says:

      I agree that free is better, but even if I’m unable to get Amex to credit this, I’d save more than $49 on just one one-way flight. Add in the value for my family, and I immediately looked at this as a very small investment into increasing and enhancing our future travels!

    • I mean, that’s a fair point… but charging for what other airlines include is Frontier’s way of life