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The Low-Cost Marvel 🤩🤔 Sun Country Airlines Flights Reviews

Looking for affordable flights? Check out Sun Country Airlines! Read traveler reviews, compare prices, and find great deals for flights out of Minneapolis✈️

Sun Country Airlines is a Minnesota-based airline that has undergone big changes in recent years, transitioning from a full-service carrier to an ultra-low-cost carrier. This airline, headquartered in Minneapolis (MSP), now competes with other budget airlines like Spirit and Frontier.

So how does Sun Country stack up? Is it a good option for your next flight? Here’s an in-depth look at the pros and cons of flying with this airline.

The Pros of Flying Sun Country

Cheaper Fares

As an ultra-low-cost carrier, Sun Country offers cheap base fares to compete with other budget airlines. A one-way flight can cost as little as $49-59 when booked in advance. This is often much less than fares on full-service carriers like Delta, American Airlines or United. Sun Country’s low fares make it attractive for budget-conscious travelers.

Extensive Route Network

For a smaller airline, Sun Country serves an impressive number of destinations – 99 routes across the United States, Caribbean, Central America and Canada as of 2022. Out of its main hub in Minneapolis, it offers nonstop flights to popular spots like Phoenix, Seattle, Portland and Nashville. Sun Country has expanded service on the East Coast too, with routes like Raleigh to Minneapolis. This extensive route network gives travelers more options.

Mostly Nonstop Flights

Unlike some budget airlines that rely on connections, the majority of Sun Country’s flights are nonstop. Nonstop flights mean faster travel times and fewer hassles for passengers. From its Minneapolis base, Sun Country provides nonstop flights to destinations across the U.S., Mexico and the Caribbean. Even on longer routes, they favor nonstops when possible.

Better Legroom in Upgraded Seats

Sun Country has moved to slimline seats to pack more passengers onboard. But legroom is better than some competitors if you select upgraded seats. There are “Best” seats with 34 inches of legroom and “Better” exit row seats with up to 38 inches. While pricier than standard seats with 29-30 inches, it’s a nice option for taller travelers willing to pay extra for more space.

Free Non-Alcoholic Drinks

Most ultra-low-cost carriers like Spirit now charge for everything onboard, including soda and water. But Sun Country still offers complimentary tea, coffee and non-alcoholic drinks on their flights. While there are no free snacks, the free beverage service is appreciated.

In-Flight Entertainment

There are no seatback entertainment screens, but Sun Country does have free streaming entertainment options to passenger’s own devices. Sun Country’s “AirFi” offers movies, TV shows, games and music to help pass the time onboard. This is better than some rivals lacking inflight entertainment.

The Cons of Flying Sun Country

Carry-On and Checked Bag Fees

The biggest downsides of Sun Country involve the proliferation of fees for extras. Like most budget airlines, you’ll pay for any carry-on or checked luggage beyond a small personal item that fits under the seat. Carry-on and first checked bag fees are $30+ each way at booking, more if paid at airport. These fees can add up quickly, especially for families.

Seat Selection Fees

In addition to baggage fees, Sun Country charges extra for seat selection. You can only choose a seat by paying a fee that starts at $9 each way. If you don’t pay up, you’re assigned a random seat at check-in. So a family booking together could end up separated on the plane.

No Mobile App

Surprisingly for an airline today, Sun Country does not offer an app. There’s talk of one finally being developed. But for now, the lack of an app for tasks like mobile boarding passes, notifications or easy flight changes is inconvenient compared to other airlines.

Ultra-Low-Cost Customer Service

As an ultra-low-cost-carrier, Sun Country has cut costs and staffing everywhere including customer service. Reviews reveal mixed experiences dealing with Sun Country’s customer service staff by phone or email. With barebones staffing, you may wait on long hold times if issues arise.

No Free Changes or Cancellations

Sun Country does allow free flight changes more than 60 days out. But within 60 days of departure, change fees apply. There are also no free cancellations, with fees deducted from any airline credit issued. For families booking vacations in advance, these policies create financial risks if plans change.

Low-Cost Carrier or More?

As an ultra-low-cost carrier, Sun Country competes on price above all else. But dig deeper, and Sun Country differs from Frontier and Spirit budget airlines in some key ways. While Sun Country may not offer all the bells and whistles of full-service legacy airlines, it provides a better onboard experience than barebones carriers.

For one, Sun Country has more legroom options, even in coach. In addition to standard seats with 29-30 inches of pitch, you can pay extra for exit rows with up to 38 inches of legroom. There are also “Best” seats at the front with 34 inches of space. Second, Sun Country offers free soft drinks, coffee and tea, unlike ultra-low-cost airlines charging for everything. Third, Sun Country provides free streaming entertainment to personal devices. Combined with reusable cloth headrests and real tray tables, Sun Country feels more like Delta or American Airlines than Spirit.

Sun Country still relies heavily on fees for bags, seat assignments, ticket changes and onboard purchases. But savvy travelers can get a relatively comfortable flight for an ultra-low fare if they understand how to avoid the airline’s extra charges.

The Sun Country Experience for Flyers

For travelers prioritizing a cheap fare above all else, Sun Country can be a great option on routes it flies nonstop. Its base fares often beat every other airline. A Sun Country flight can cost hundreds less than legacy carriers for the same route. For budget-focused flyers who pack light and don’t mind barebones service, those low fares are hard to pass up.

But Sun Country isn’t the right choice for every type of traveler or flight. Families trying to sit together may end up paying more in seat selection fees than they save. Business travelers expecting free changes will pay change fees to switch flights. And flyers wanting a mobile app, frequent flyer perks or robust customer service should look elsewhere.

To avoid frustration with Sun Country, read the fine print carefully when booking. Know exactly what is – and isn’t – included in the base fare. Scan the airline’s fees webpage before paying to ensure you understand the potential extra costs of seat selection, bags, ticket changes, onboard food and more. Pack light or be ready to pay bag fees. And have backup plans in case there are operational issues, since Sun Country’s customer service may be lacking.

If you know what to expect, Sun Country can be a cost-effective, convenient way to travel between destinations with nonstop service on its primarily leisure-focused route network. Just be an informed consumer.

Terrible Sun Country Experiences

While Sun Country works well for certain flyers, others report terrible experiences with fees, delays, cancellations and subpar customer service. Here are some of the most common complaints from disappointed Sun Country passengers:

  • Excessive fees for carry-ons, checked bags, selecting a seat, and other basics that are free on most airlines
  • Long hold times reaching customer service by phone after flight issues
  • Lack of rebooking options and compensation provided after delays or cancellations
  • Being separated from family members on the same reservation due to no free advance seat selection
  • Car rental reservations unable to be changed or cancelled even months in advance
  • Losing baggage with slow reimbursement responses from the airline
  • Overall unfriendly service from the airline’s cabin crew and gate staff
  • Outdated technology and processes like lack of a mobile app for check-in and boarding

While problems can happen on any airline, Sun Country’s barebones approach does little to help travelers when things go wrong. Before booking your next flight, weigh the risks and your options should you require flexibility or customer service along the way.

Should You Fly Sun Country Airlines?

For the right traveler on the right route, Sun Country can be a good option thanks to low fares and extensive flight options across the U.S., Caribbean and Central America. The airline offers good value on point-to-point routes where a nonstop flight is already a good fit.

But Sun Country isn’t the right choice for every flyer or flight. The airline’s barebones culture and extra fees can be frustrating. Families in particular may end up paying far more in fees for bags, seat assignments, ticket changes, etc. And quality concerns persist around Sun Country’s customer service.

Here are some key questions to consider before booking with Sun Country:

  • Is your route served nonstop, or will a connection be required? Sun Country is better for direct flights.
  • How much baggage will you be traveling with? The fees add up quickly.
  • How tight is your budget? The base fare may be cheap, but fees for bags and seats reduce the value.
  • How likely are you to change your flight? Change fees apply within 60 days of departure.
  • How much do you value things like mobile apps, seatback screens, premium cabin options and roomy legroom? Sun Country lacks those amenities some travelers expect.

While Sun Country isn’t always the top choice, its affordable nonstop flights can be a good option for budget-minded travelers on certain routes – especially with a small bag and no frills approach. But fliers should weigh the airline’s fees, restrictions and service culture against their own travel needs before booking.

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