Although Frontier Airlines is doing more to attract frequent travelers, CEO Barry Biffle calls the workforce “lazy” when it comes to work-from-home attitudes and reducing business travel.
Is the U.S. workforce becoming “lazy” because more work is being done from home and business travel is decreasing?
As Frontier Airlines attempts to attract more travelers with status matches and easier ways to earn elite status, the carrier’s CEO Barry Biffle recently made comments suggesting that the “changes productivity” harms every aspect of one’s business.
Biffle: “We got lazy with COVID”
Yahoo! Finance reports that Biffle’s comments were made at a Morgan Stanley investor conference. During an interview, the CEO chastised employees who chose to work from home rather than come to the office.
“We got lazy with COVID,” Biffle said, as quoted by Yahoo. “I mean, seriously, people are still allowing people to work from home. All this nonsense, isn’t it? That’s all out the window.
Additionally, Biffle said planes were not as full or as profitable compared to 2019 due to working from home. He says a lack of productivity is partly to blame for the decline in demand for air travel.
“When we look at overhead versus 2019 adjusted for capacity, it increases significantly,” Biffle said, according to Yahoo. “Why do I have more people per plane in overhead than in 2019? This is because they are not as productive.
Frontier Thinks Outside the Box to Attract More Flyers
Despite its accusations that the workforce is “not as productive,” Frontier is moving forward with an aggressive plan to attract more travelers to the ultra-low-cost carrier. The airline again expanded their status matching program for all levels, including the top tier Elite 100K. Now, Frontier will accept connections from 15 airlines, 15 hotels and 15 cruise lines, including Carnival, Disney Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean. While matching at the Elite 100K level is available with proof of top tier status with a competing airline, it is not available when matching with a hotel or cruise line. Requesting a status match with Frontier costs $99 for the Elite 20K and 50K tiers, and $149 for the 100K tier.
The Denver-based carrier also offers two packages that allow travelers to access elite status before the end of 2023. Travelers can purchase Elite 20K status on its own for $499 or combine it with a GoWild! All-You-Can-Fly fall and winter pass for $649. The elite status purchased will be valid until the end of 2024, while the pass is valid for select flights until February 29, 2024. Terms and conditions apply to both options.
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