I like Spirit Airlines.
OK. I've only flown it once. And I bought a "big front seat," the Spirit rough (very rough) equivalent of first class. But Spirit has a compelling business strategy, and it offers value for travelers. In exchange for bargain fares, passengers don't get a lot of extras. No drinks or free big carry-on bags, for example.
Spirit has never pretended to be a full-service carrier. But invariably, the carrier receives complaints from passengers who don't understand the proposition. Some complain to the U.S. Department of Transportation.
CEO Ben Baldanza likes to play up his airline's unusual approach. In a marketing video this week, he speaks with "newsman" puppet, Carl Feltman, who asks him why Spirit is so hated. Baldanza explains that the DOT receives only 7.9 complaints per 100,000 Spirit passengers.
Baldanza: "If you do the math, that means 99.9% of passengers did not complain. That means you're more likely to be injured by a chainsaw than complain about Spirit. So we must be doing something right."
Puppet: "Uh, do you spend a lot of time with chainsaws, Ben?
Baldanza: "Only when I'm cutting prices!"
Also, make sure to read the news crawl at the bottom of the video. Someone at Spirit was having a good time making this video.