Would You Pay 99 Cents For A Flight Details SMS?

I'm well used to the idea that budget airlines will try and charge for everything they can, so I wasn't shocked when I booked a Jetstar flight recently and they whacked me with a $4 fee for choosing my seat. But I balked at the notion of paying 99 cents just so they could send me an SMS with the details of my booking.

There are fees which I personally wouldn't pay, but which I can understand: the $6 for priority boarding, for instance, might be worth it if you're travelling with small children or really want to snaffle an overhead locker. (Priority boarding makes even more sense on airlines like Ryanair where you don't get seat allocations: in that context, getting on first is helpful if you're a large family.)

But I can't see why anyone would pay 99 cents to get sent basic flight information. If you've got a smart phone, you'll get the confirmation email anyway. Even if you don't, I'd have thought writing down the details (and perhaps storing them in the phone's memo application) would be a better approach. What do readers think? Tell us in the comments.


Comments

    *cough* rip off!

    In my opinion they should trade off some marketing value for the privelidge of SMSing their customers (contact details for surveys, promotions, etc)...

    It's starting to sound like Telstra a year or so ago, so many fees ("Oh, you want to PAY your bill? that costs extra!") - and then they went too far with the fees and the public backlashed against it.

    The same thing will happen with the airlines, although Jetstar's saving grace for now is that Tiger is still worse!

    Rob

    Frankly it's getting a bit ridiculous. I'm concerned that soon budget airlines are going to charge you just to listen to their safety demonstration. I only ever fly Virgin/Qantas so it's not of great concern. Qantas are good, Virgin are getting quite impressive lately. I flew Tiger once and it was, confidently, the worst airline experience I've ever had.

    Even paying $4 to choose your seat is ridiculous. For Jetstar's cheapest sale fare at the moment ($35) that represents more than 10% of the overall fare.

    And most of the time all of the seats are going to the same place anyway.

    The only use I can think of is if you're an overseas traveler and don't want to use roaming data on your smartphone to receive the confirmation email, but want the flight details handy in your pocket.

    Then again, it might cost more than 99c if you're using a SIM that is roaming?

    Seems like a pretty profitable service for them to run with next to no overheads.

    Yes!,... no wait, no.

    You don't HAVE to pay to select your seat. Just click "skip seat selection" and you avoid the fee. Duh!

    If they could get away with it I'm sure the budget airlines would charge a fee to have a seat belt.

    my understanding of budget airlines is that they charge a low basic rate and make their profit on slugging you for extras like food, oxygen and parachutes.
    Then you decide if you want to run with that business model.

    So apart from exploring the depths of what they try to get away with and marvelling at their audacity, complaining about them is futile as they still get enough customers to make it viable.

    @James, you aren't charged extra to receive SMSes while roaming so your suggestion is probably a decent one

    @Angus...if you took the time to read the details about the SMS process, it does say that it can be sent to anyphone (not just smartphones). So with all of this said, honestly take the time to read the procedures before you hammer at it...

      @Joe -- if you took the time to read my post, it's very clear that I appreciated that it was a standard SMS which would be accessible on any mobile -- I make that very point! Still doesn't make it worth 99 cents IMHO.

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