Last week I flew from Chicago to Denver to do some improv. It was a very fun trip, I’m thankful I was able to take it, and I’m thankful that my flight was paid for. I flew Frontier, and it was fine. I didn’t die, the flight was a little bumpy at times but not in a particularly frightening or worrisome way. But Frontier Airlines didn’t do itself any favors in the manner of putting its customers’ concerns at ease. Luckily, I have devised some ways to make Frontier appear to be a safer and more capable airline.
1. Stop Calling Yourself Frontier Airlines
Thanks to history classes and the “Oregon Trail” computer game, the typical American probably doesn’t associate the frontier with innovative advancements in the science of flight, offering complete safety in defiance of gravity at affordable rates. I know I don’t. I think of full-body clothing, dysentery, infant mortality, desperation, a lack of birth control, and covered wagons. Covered wagons, by the way, are flightless vehicles, led by oxen, and are fairly vulnerable to Native American attacks. I don’t want my airplane to resemble any of those things.
When you google image search “frontier,” this is the first image that comes up:
And after that, it isn’t airplanes. It is a bunch of pickup trucks. Which are also typically flightless.
So, consider a name change. One that inspires confidence. Jetpack Eagle Airlines maybe? Comfort Nimbus Airlines? Opposite of Hindenburg Airlines? Any of those names are perfect, and you can just have them! But try on something new. And please do better than Virgin Airlines. I don’t want to fly with an airline who has never flown before.
2. Stop Representing Your Aircrafts With Animal Characters
Frankly, wikipedia puts it more clearly and concisely than I could: “Frontier uses wildlife photography on the vertical stabilizers and winglets of the aircraft to produce a distinctive look, touted in their advertisements along with their slogan: “A Whole Different Animal.””
On my flights I had Cloe the fawn. A baby deer. First of all, that isn’t how you spell Chloe. Second, why is my plane’s spirit animal a flightless, ground dwelling, non-hollow boned creature? That isn’t reassuring at all. You couldn’t have picked an eagle? A hawk? Cardinal? Owl? Sparrow? Even a fictitious flyer like a griffin, phoenix, or pidgeotto? Nope a deer – a clumsy, vulnerable, baby deer.
There are other animals, too. There’s also Jack the rabbit, Grizwald the bear, Foxy the fox, Flip the dolphin (A DOLPHIN??), Larry the lynx, Hector the sea otter, and Sal the cougar. And they recently added the Penguins: Jim, Joe, Jay, and Gary, a barbershop-style quartet. Notice something? THEY ARE ALL FLIGHTLESS. If you pressure any of those animals off of a cliff, they’ll rapidly plummet and die face first. Even when Frontier Airlines picks a bird to represent their craft, they make it a bird that can’t fly, and then they pick it four times over and make it sing for no reason.
At the end of the flight, after we’d landed (and right after the pilot bragged about how they are the cheapest option!) our pilot thanked us the passengers, the wait staff, his co-pilot, and “most of all, Cloe the deer fawn.” Please, Frontier, don’t lead me to believe that my pilot, the guy in charge of my sky-bound existence, thinks that this deer is something palpable and living, as opposed to giant clipart on a triangle attached to your flimsy wing. Please.
3. Don’t let THIS GRAPH Exist
To be honest, I can’t tell on this graph if it is better to have a lower number or higher number (is it measuring safety ratings or measuring the number of accidents?) – I was always bad at graph reading, just ask the ACT. But Frontier Airlines is right near the middle. And the middle is always a bad score. I know that from basic math, which I did OK on.
Also, Frontier acquired Midwest Airlines a few years ago. You may notice that Midwest Airlines is on the far right of the graph. That either means that it acquired the regional airline with the most accidents to its record, or it desperately acquired the airline with the best record. Either way, they oughta get rid of that graph, ya know.
SO, Frontier Airlines, there is my advice. If you don’t take it, I won’t be offended, but if I refuse to fly with you because my plane has been bestowed with the flying ability of badger named Barnaby, you can’t be offended either.