Frontier Airlines Adding European-Style Business Class

Frontier Airlines, which is struggling financially (as is ultra low cost Spirit Airlines), is trying a number of new things. They’ve just announced an intra-Europe style business class offering that they call UpFront Plus seating.

The first two rows of the aircraft, which already come with extra legroom, will also allow for blocked middle seats. Pricing will “start” at $49.

Starting today, customers can upgrade to UpFront Plus seating for flights departing on or after April 10, 2024, by reserving seats on the Frontier mobile app or at As a special introductory offer, UpFront Plus seating upgrades will be available starting at only $49 per passenger, per flight segment for travel between April 10 and April 30, 2024, when purchased by March 20, 2024*.

Within Europe business class is usually a blocked middle seat as well as upgraded catering. Frontier is promising only that passengers get ‘served first’ by virtue of being in one of the first two rows. This product will have more legroom than British Airways Club Europe.

British Airways Club Europe

With most airlines, customers can buy an extra seat which will generally mean an empty middle seat, by paying whatever is the current fare. Almost nobody does this, and airlines don’t make it easy. PlusGrade offered a tool for airlines to upsell passengers this during the pandemic, yet strangely it didn’t take off. (Their tool would allow for booking as many extra seats as you want, all part of the purchase path.)

Frontier Airlines CEO Barry Biffle used to be a top executive at Spirit, and has shared the story of how Spirit started offering its business class-ish Big Front Seat. They just didn’t want to spend the money to remove first class seats from planes: “We literally were so broke that we didn’t have the $3 million that it would take to actually get rid of it.”

Spirit Airlines Big Front Seat

Here Frontier won’t be removing seats or reconfiguring aircraft. They’re simply selling customers more than one seat on the aircraft. As long as they price it properly, it’s a win (extra revenue). What’s more, since they’re blocking the middle, they effectively sell that extra middle seat to two passengers – the one at the window and the one at the aisle in each of the first two rows. More airlines should do this.

Having an empty middle seat next to you is probably the biggest difference in any coach experience. I’d do this in a heartbeat at competitive pricing. However I generally don’t fly Frontier because they do not offer inflight internet.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. The interesting part about this is it sounds like they are removing the first 2 rows from being selected by elites, which takes the number of Stretch seats they can select from 30 seats on the 320neos to 18, a huge hit, especially for Golds who can’t select Stretch until check-in.

  2. Good for Frontier. However, I still cannot imagine anything that they could do to entice me to fly with them.

  3. This hilarious. The elite members are now block from the front seats after spending all of that money to become elite. You can’t make this stuff up.

  4. They block the seat…until they flight is sold out and then sell it anyway. I wouldn’t trust Frontier

  5. US Airways tried this with Metro Jet back in the 90’s. It just doesn’t translate to U.S. flights. No one paid for it or wanted to upgrade.

  6. I’ve had good experiences flying Frontier for short haul and like the pay for what you actually need pricing structure. I’ll definitely be booking these “Euro business” seats

  7. Passengers on local LH flights in Europe complain about this type of seating all the time!

  8. With no lounges? about food? food?

    They’ll struggle to sell this seat on a ULCC

  9. @Frank

    Retired and living in Malta I sit in those biz class seats. All four to nine rows. I average 20 to 35 flights per year. Never heard anyone complain, except an American. European biz meals better than American first. AND no surly FA’s. She’d a few pounds.

  10. I find the “European” style narrow body business seat to be quite good. I’ve only experienced on Croatian Airlines, BA and LH but I like the additional shoulder room. (I know I’m weird as I don’t like strangers touching me. Consequently I avoid SWA even though I fly free on WN. Lots of touching going on there.). Should I find myself on Frontier, and I can’t imagine why, I’ll pay the extra just as I would pay for the Big Front Seat on Spirit (they still offer that?)

  11. I took advantage of a similar offer with WOW Air (RIP) KEF-BOS. I’d do it again. This would also make me consider F9 for future travel.

  12. I bought middle seats several times during the Covid-19 pandemic. JetBlue was easy but Singapore Airlines was a pain. I haven’t flown Frontier airlines but this sounds like a good deal. The only downside is that it may lead to 12 inch wide seats with four on each side of a single aisle airplane.

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