Since Frontier changed its procedures, ALG Vacations® has gotten a lot of questions from travel advisors and vacationers trying to navigate this “new” … well, frontier, particularly when it comes to touching down in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. The gateway to favorite all-inclusive beach destinations like Bavaro Beach, Cap Cana, Macao, and Uvero Alto as well as the most in-demand Caribbean destination for American leisure travelers across the States, clearing confusion around this area is clearly important.
Luckily, we have a fleet of pros on board, including ALGV BDMs Sandy Meyer and Jennifer Palka and Frontier team members. As an Exclusive Nonstop Vacation Flights (ENVF) partner, we have access to clear and direct answers direct from the source. So why not Ask a Pro? We did for the Cancun airport, after all!
Here are some important tips to help you glide through checking in for your Frontier flight to Punta Cana.
1. Complete the E-ticket form.
Before you check in, before you head to the airport, you need to fill out and submit their E-ticket form. This digital form replaces their traditional customs form and completion is required for anyone arriving or departing from Dominican Republic. You can fill it out at any time, but for convenience’s sake, do it before you travel.
Once done, Meyer says, “Take a screen shot or save the E-TKT QR code. You’ll need this upon arrival in PUJ.”
Also, remember that you’ll need to fill this out twice – once departing, and once returning, so put that on your to-do list for as soon as you touch down in the DR!
2. Check in with your Frontier account.
Same as with Cancun, it’s absolutely imperative that customers have their email addresses registered with Frontier and have an active Frontier profile. This is how they’ll get their important reminders and notices about flight changes directly from the source. Having an account also helps in the case of refunds for purchased seats and bags, if needed, and alert them of any deposited credit in those cases.
Most importantly, though, it allows them to check in online, even directly from their reminder email.
Meyer’s check-in advice for Cancun still applies for the DR. “You might want to suggest that clients download the Frontier app before they travel,” for more immediate access on a Smart phone versus having to go to FlyFrontier.com.
Where the process deviates is that passengers will want to select Self-Help during check-in. Selecting this option is the difference between having to pay a fee at the counter or saving their hard-earned dollars for add-ons like romantic dinners or excursions during their vacation in Dominican Republic. ATV tour or catamaran cruise, anyone?
3. Head to the ticket counter.
Good news for those flying out of St. Louis or Philadelphia to Punta Cana on Frontier – provided you check in online, there are “No counter agent assist charges at this time!” reports Meyer and fellow ALG Vacations® BDM Jennifer Palka.
Walk on over to the Frontier ticket counter with your passport and DR E-TKT in hand, with bags ready to check or tag.
Palka notes that in Philly, there’ll be one counter with one to two computers and agents dedicated to international flights. “They have two more counters with four to six agents for domestic flights, of which there are five to eight per day around the same time as the Cancun and Punta Cana departures. The domestic lines are often so long that you walk into a huge crowd and won’t even see the sign indicating what’s for the international flights,” she tells us. In other words, let your clients know to be on a sharp lookout to avoid wasting time waiting on the wrong line!
Once you arrive to the front, they’ll print your boarding pass, take or tag your bag, and you can head on out through security to your gate.
4. Rinse and repeat for your return.
Meyer shares that there are still no counter agent assist charges at this time on your way out, either, so long as you select Self-Help as your check-in option before heading over to the counter. Just “Be sure to complete the E-TKT before arriving to the PUJ airport, though; the airport WiFi may offer some challenges you don’t want to run into!” she cautions. Take a screen shot or save the QR code, same as before, and have it ready along with your passport for verification.
5. Don’t forget to measure your bags!
Anyone that’s flown this brand knows that they’re sticklers for size, so be aware that what constitutes a for-fee carry-on and a for-free personal item can make things a tight squeeze. They are strict with their baggage rules and will often require passengers drop their carry-on or personal items into the luggage sizer immediately before boarding. If it doesn’t slide in easily without “encouragement,” the gate agent may force you to pay a fee on the spot in order to board.
According to their guidelines, a personal item should be no more than 14” x 18” x 8”, which is smaller than some travel backpacks. Carry-on bags can’t exceed over 35 pounds and “standard” carry-on suitcases may not always fit in the overhead compartment. Checking your dimensions makes sure that you’ll be able to get it on board and avoid the hassle of last-minute fees, gate-checking, or other inconveniences. Plus, it can help you make the best decision regarding whether you should struggle to fit everything in a smaller suitcase and pay more to keep it with you, or take the roomier bag and take the pre-purchased checked bag discount, which allows you to take more with you and pay less.
6. Give it a try!
ENVFs like those ALGV offers in partnership with Frontier are typically the best values you can get for leisure travel to our top sun-and-sand destinations. This new process really isn’t as complicated as you may think, and there are ways to avoid additional fees. Benefits for consumers include:
- Access from over a dozen gateways across the U.S.
- Nonstop flights scheduled for max time in-destination
- Special discounts on air-inclusive vacation packages
- Price matching for best fare
- Early access to ticket sales
- Waived baggage fees and seat assignments with select flights
Plus, they offer a host of benefits to travel advisors who sell them.
Our pros advise that vacationers go ahead and give Frontier ENVFs a shot. They may find themselves pleasantly surprised with more money in their pockets and extra hours on the beach!
We all know how important it is to Plan with a Pro when it comes to travel. After all, Travel Advisors Get You There. But equally important is making sure advisor pros are supported and surrounded by pros themselves, particularly when it comes to topics peripheral to travel. That’s where TravelBlogue comes in as we Ask a Pro on your behalf to provide you with tips and advice from fitness, health, nutrition, mental health, beauty, wellness, and travel gear experts from around the world … and put it all at advisor fingertips.