35,000 Miles Frontier Airlines Credit Card: Now up to 50,000 Miles

[Emily & I earn a referral for the links to the Barclays Frontier Airlines credit card in this post.  As always, we're very grateful if you use our links!]

Update: Offer is now up to 50,000 miles.  You get 40,000 miles after $500 in the first 90 days and 10,000 miles after a $10,000 balance transfer in the first 90 days.  The balance transfer is usually never worth it for the extra miles.

Frontier Airlines Credit Card

Application Link:  Barclays Frontier Airlines

Barclays-Frontier-Airlines

Million Mile Secrets reader Dluke (thanks!) recently commented that the Barclays Frontier Airlines card was his new favorite card.  So I thought I’d review the card & add it to the Airlines Credit Card tab.  I’ve flown Frontier before and the crew were pleasant and the price was right!

Barclays usually uses the TransUnion credit bureau, so is often a good choice for folks who have lots of credit inquires with Experian and Equifax because of many credit card applications from Chase, American Express, and Bank of America.

It costs only 30,000 Frontier miles to fly to Mexico or Central America and only 20,000 Frontier miles for return award flights within the US.

Here’s a list of cities which Frontier Airlines serves – it was much more than I expected!

Frontier Airlines Credit Card Review

1.   35,000 Mile Sign-up Bonus

You get 25,000 Frontier Airlines miles as a sign up bonus after your 1st purchase and another 10,000 points after spending $750 within 90 days (~ 3 months) of being approved for the Barclays Frontier Airlines credit card.

$750 minimum spending within 3 months is lower than the minimum spending on other cards, though American Express Bluebird makes it fairly easy to complete high spending requirements.

35,000 miles is on the lower end of what I’d currently sign-up for, but it is nice to have another Barclays alternative besides the US Air credit card.

Note that you only receive 5,000 miles if you are approved for the lower Platinum MasterCard instead of the World Mastercard.

However, it is only 20,000 miles (compared to 25,000 miles on other airlines) for a round-trip coach award anywhere in the US including Alaska on Frontier Airlines.

It costs only 30,00 miles for a round-trip coach award to Mexico, Jamaica, Costa Rica & the Dominican Republic.

Here is a link to the Frontier Airlines award chart and here’s a list of cities which Frontier Airlines serves.

2.  5,000 Fewer Miles for Companion Tickets.  You pay 5,000 fewer miles when you redeem Frontier miles for a companion along with a paid (cash) ticket.

For example, let’s say you buy a ticket on Frontier from Denver to Kansas City.  You can pay 15,000 miles for a companion on that flight (instead of the regular 20,000 miles). You also have to pay taxes and fees for the companion ticket, and the seats are capacity controlled.  I don’t see the 5,000 fewer miles for a Companion Ticket as a great benefit, but could be useful for some.

3.   Double Miles on Frontier Airlines.  You earn double miles for purchases on Frontier Airlines.

4.  Rental Car Redemptions.   You can get a 7 day midsize National Car Rental for 35,000 miles (excluding Manhattan, New York).  Another potential redemption option is a 5 day Hertz Sports Utility or Minivan rental for 40,00 miles (excluding New York Tri-State Metropolitan area, Alaska or Hawaii).  This may not be the best deal all the time, but could be useful when rental car prices are high.

5.  Amtrak & Hotel Redemptions.  You can also redeem miles on Amtrak and for hotels.  These don’t strike me as the best use of Frontier miles, but could be helpful for some.

6.  American Express Transfer Partner.  You can transfer American Express Membership Rewards points to Frontier Airlines in a 1:1 ratio if you need to top off your account.

7.  Bike Considered Luggage.  Dluke points out that Frontier’s main hub is in Denver and that they consider shipping a bike just like another piece of luggage, so you don’t pay oversize fees.

Drawbacks

1.  Foreign Transaction Fee.   There is a 3% foreign transaction fee so don’t use the card for purchases outside the US.

3.  $59 Annual Fee Not Waived.  The $59 annual fee is not waived for the 1st year.

4.  10,000 Bonus Miles For Balance Transfers.   Earn up to 10,000 bonus miles for balance transfers within the first 90 days.

This is not a good way to earn miles, because even though the balance transfer APR is 0% for the 1st 15 months,  there is a 3% fee (4% after the 1st 15 months) which is NOT capped making this very expensive.

For example, on the maximum balance transfer of $10,000, you would pay a $300 fee ($10,000 X 3%) or 3 cents per mile to earn 10,00 Frontier Airlines miles.

5.  Not For Everyday Use.  This card has a good sign-up bonus and it is from Barclays which doesn’t issue many other airline credit cards.  However, the card doesn’t offer much benefit for everyday spending.

6.  6-Month Activity.   The terms suggest that you have to make one purchase every 6 months to keep your account open.

Failure to meet these requirements may result in account closure and forfeiture of all outstanding points earned.

I haven’t heard of anyone’s Barclays account being closed for inactivity after 6 months, but it *could* happen.  That said, the Frontier miles which are already in your Frontier account are yours to keep.

7.   Platinum vs. World Master Card.  You may instead receive the Platinum MasterCard which offers only 5,000 Frontier miles after the first purchase if you do not qualify for the World MasterCard.

I hate this type of bait and switch wording in the fine print, and want to make you aware of the possibility of only getting 5,000 Frontier miles instead of 35,000 miles if you don’t qualify for the World MasterCard.

Reconsideration

If you are initially denied online, call the Barclays reconsideration backdoor number (866-408-4064) and explain to the rep why you want the card.

Bottom Line

The Frontier Airlines credit card may not have the highest sign-up bonus in the market, but could be useful since it is issued by Barclays bank.  It is nice to have a few other credit card options from Barclays besides the US Air credit card.

Barclays usually uses the TransUnion credit bureau, so is often a good choice for folks who have lots of credit inquires with Experian and Equifax because of many credit card applications from Chase, American Express, and Bank of America.

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33 Responses to 35,000 Miles Frontier Airlines Credit Card: Now up to 50,000 Miles

  1. Disappointed Guy

    I have the card and I’m extremely disappointed with it. i took screenshots of the offer and it was honored for me after 3 months of fighting and sending them faxes of the screenshots and calling and talking to about 12 different operators spending about 35 min with each one, no joke. They have very bad customer service. It would take me about an hour explaining the problem to a rep just to be sent to another rep and having to explain everything again. I had the same problem with my wife’s card except that we just cancelled hers. only got 5 thousand miles and alotta headaches with her card. Somehow they gave her the awards for the no annual fee card while charging her the annual fee card!! you would think that it would be pretty easy to solve once the reps would see that she was charged 60 bux and was only given 5k points but they said that that’s what we applied for and that was it. at least i got the 35k but unfortunately she didn’t and we spent a good chance of gettig a better offer with another CC, hopefully no one will have those disappointing calls and have to waste their time like we did!! If you still want to get it book a dummy flight trough frontier.com and before you pay they’ll give you the option of a 75 statement credit aside the “rewards” if you apply and are instantly approved, then you can cancel the purchase but still get the credit, don’t know about the awrds but credit they’ll give you lol! take alotta screen shots just in case!!

  2. @Disappointed Guy – I clicked through booking a ticket and was offered a $75 statement credit on the no-annual fee card that only has 5k bonus points after purchase. Did you get an offer for a $75 statement credit on the annual-fee card with the 35k offer? The website I went to for booking was flyfrontier.com.

  3. Thanks for posting Darius. Love my card. Already used my points to book a Cabo trip and then transferred Amex rewards pts to book direct flight to Denver for the whole family ski trip. Website is quirky, so I have had to do transactions over the phone which has always gone smoothly. Also cannot over-emphasize the advantage of not having to pay a HUGE charge for shipping mountain bikes in the summer. No more $35-45/day mb rentals!

  4. Is Fairbanks and Anchorage seasonal service?

  5. I’ll have to check out this card. Barclays is small in the CC mkt but has a few good ones like USAir and Travelocity that I like.

  6. @Disappointed Guy @Jack - Thanks for the tip. But I made a dummy booking and was offered only the 5K mile version. The terms say that you could get only 5K miles if you’re not approved for the World MasterCard, and I dislike such bait & switch tactics.

    @Dluke - Thanks for the suggestion!

    @Lantean – I believe it is seasonal service to Alaska.

    @MileageUpdate – They also have the Lufthansa card, but you have to pay fuel surcharges when redeeming.

  7. Disappointed Guy

    I went and checked the site and indeed they downgraded the offer so it’s not a good deal anymore. Back in July they had the same offer posted here with the 75 statement credit. I guess it was only seasonal.

  8. I have the frontier airline card. Applied for it last February with intentions to get me and my wife to Costa Rica from Salt Lake City. Around 2 months after getting the card, I got the following offer, which I successfully completed and now have the miles I need for my trip….

    Dear Steven,

    You already earn miles for every purchase with your new Frontier Airlines MasterCard®. And with this special offer your card is now more rewarding than ever. Earn 15,000 bonus miles – more than enough for a one-way award ticket¹ – when you spend over $1,250 in new purchases in April, May and June.²

  9. Disappointed Guy

    Have the same offer but with less spending limit. Not everyone gets invited though. I called to see if I could get my wife’s card enrolled ans they said that if she didn’t get the email she wasn’t eligible. She has a way better credit than me (in the 800) and makes way more money go figure!!
    d17ogcqyct0vcy.cloudfront.net/239/599/0YuvDA9lDJ9NnioOKH.jpg

  10. Disappointed Guy

    750 to spend in the months of Oct Nov and Dec to be specific!

  11. If you get the card, be sure you can fly Frontier. This is an old data point (from about 4 years ago), but may be instructive. I once transferred years of accrued AMEX membership rewards points to Frontier with the intent of taking their nonstop roundtrip from my home airport of Sacramento to Guadalajara. Pretty much that same day, the scheduled flight was cancelled. It turned out that Frontier had to meet a debt payment that week and had to quickly sell four airplanes, one of which was the plane that served that route.

    We looked around for other flights we could take, and it was very hard to find saver awards that did not leave Tuesday or Wednesday, and we were willing to go almost anywhere to use our points, which by that time were stuck with Frontier.

    Also, Frontier had a strange schedule in which the flights from the West Coast arrive into the Denver hub after flights to most other destinations depart. So it was almost impossible to find a connection to many places they fly, and they don’t even have published routes between many of the destination pairs they serve. I hope they have fixed this but I can’t say, since I haven’t flown them since.

    We finally did find flights in and out of Fort Myers, FL, booking about 5 months in advance, with a 3-hour layover in Denver. (with a weather delay it was 6 hours) Then when we arrived in Ft. Myers at 1:30 am, the Frontier luggage handlers had already gone home, so we had to wait another hour at the airport for another airline’s baggage handlers to unload our luggage.

    One advantage of Frontier is: for those flying into Washington DC from the West Coast is that they fly into Reagan airport, which is far superior to Dulles (america’s least enjoyable airport in my opinion) and worth a plane change in Denver.

    Also, we found the onboard service to be pretty decent. Like Southwest, there is no first class cabin, but that is a non-issue for us.

  12. @Daraius – Thanks for the Frontier coverage which just brought to my attention that Frontier flies to/from Bellingham which is half an hour driving from Vancouver, Canada. A great option since flying to and from Canada is usually extremely expensive with lots of taxes and fees and gouging by either Air Canada or West Jet.

  13. I noticed a WiFi symbol on the card’s picture. It means that the data on the card can be read from a distance. It’s worth noting that most banks have abandoned this feature, as it’s fairly useless to consumers. It also simplifies theft of account information.

  14. Frontier – meh. Hub in Denver is great – if you live in Denver. Everywhere else is a hassle – who wants to change planes just to get anywhere? The only Barclays card I’m interested in is their NFL card – spend $1K, get $400 credit. They’d do better just to send checks for $300 and save themselves the postage and effort to send out statement credits.

  15. I’ll probably pass as well on this. Too many other opportunities. I’d hate to have a bunch of orphaned Frontier miles.

  16. @steve @Disappointed Guy – Thanks for sharing. Nice to know that they give bonus miles for meeting certain spending thresholds similar to other Barclays cards.

    @Bottom-Feeding the High Life (zzd) – Thanks for the detailed tips. I’ve flown Frontier only twice and the service was friendly and the ticket price was cheap.

    @MileHunter – Glad it helped!

    @Max – I haven’t seen that wi-fi symbol on other cards, and other cards by Barclays don’t have it so I wonder if it was an outdated picture.

    @Ron – I like the idea of mailing checks to everyone!

    @MileageUpdate - There are lots of other cards, and this card isn’t for everyone.

  17. Any idea if 35k redemption for the National car rental for one week is limited to the US? Frontier does not fly anywhere near me- BOS, so I would only be interested in a rental when traveling in Europe, which we do often.

  18. @D – I really don’t know. National has a partnership with Europcar and Alamo outside the US for rentals, but it doesn’t hurt to call 1-866-263-2759 to find out.

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  23. Jimmy Chacko

    I recently applied for Frontier MC with $59 fee. I got approved and started using the card to accumulate miles. The offer was 25,000 bonus miles after first use. After receiving the first bill I noticed that I have only 5000 bonus miles instead of 25,000 miles.
    I called customer service and to be frank the worst customer service I ever experienced. They told me that the miles offered are based on credit!!! Not everyone gets 25,000 bonus miles. I was shocked to hear that and nowhere in terms & conditions it is specified. One advice DO NOT GET THIS CARD.

    They fraudulently offer points.

  24. @Jimmy Chacko – I mention the bait and switch in my post and it really is quite unfriendly to consumers.

  25. @Jimmy Chacko – Were you charged the annual fee on your card?

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  28. Great overview, as per usual Daraius.

    I’ve had the Frontier M/C via Barclay’s for about a year now…, and I can add a few details, tips, and uncertainties from my experience.

    * I got the 35K mileage bonus, after $750 spending in first 90 days. (it actually came in two chunks, 25 and 10k — and was bit complicated — and their system self-corrected.)

    * Especially during the winter months, I received multiple offers to use my Frontier M/C to get various discounts and/or seating upgrades on Frontier reservations. (usually about $25/ ticket. When Frontier sells seats for $49, or sometimes less, tickets are nearly…. free…. sic. Had that happen for us when flying from tiny Shenandoah airport last year. At one point, tickets on that route were down to $12, including fees, if you used this card — see end note)

    * 3 months after opening the account, I was offered another bonus of 15,000 miles — if I’d spend $750 per calendar month, for 3 months, for first quarter of 2013. I did so — though it was again rather wild getting that bonus. (didn’t get it until July)

    * Best not to call Barclay’s customer service at night with complex ff questions, as you’ll get overseas reps. who may be courteous and nominally speak english, but not comprehend fully your question. After the 3rd try, I asked for a state-side rep. — got a very helpful one. She was very friendly, but amazingly, she had to manually tabulate my c.c. purchases during Jan, Feb. and Mar. — with me on the phone — to realize that yup, I’d satisfied terms of the promotion. (even then, after she’d put in for the correction, took another 45 days for it to fully post correctly)

    * it appears the opening promotional mileage bonus is now up to 40,000 miles, for those getting the annual fee version, and who spend $500 in 90 days.

    * I’m now facing decision on keeping the fee card going forward, or converting to the no-fee card. I was just told by a friendly overseas rep. (….) that I would lose the 5k discount for companions using flier miles, if I were to convert to the no-fee card. (Can anybody confirm that?)

    *I also might (or might not) also lose the very generous balance transfer offers Barclays is offering me on the current card. (currently 0%, with only 1% transaction fee) I ordinarily don’t keep long term balances on credit cards. (but special need & opportunity present)

    * Unlike Southwest et. al., I gather Frontier does not give miles for annual renewal fees paid.. (if I keep that version)

    * About flying Frontier, they indeed are a very low cost carrier, and I have noticed they’ve been quite bold at trying out routes with jet service to smaller airports. Last year, they flew a seasonal route mentioned above from SHD (Virginia) to Orlando…. A LOT of us were bummed out to see Frontier not renewing that route this year. (Phone reps assured us last April it would be) By contrast, Frontier has had a great deal of success with multiple routes from other small airports like Princeton, NJ (sic) — and now Wilmington, Delaware….. (great for folks living near those airports) Princeton even had to rebuild and lengthen their runways — to handle the demand. ;-)

    Corrections, comments welcome.

  29. PS , Daraius, your own link (at beginning of this thread) now goes to the current promotion — at 40,000 bonus miles. (not counting bal. transfer option for another 10K — agree with you that’s ordinarily not a good deal — at 3% btf)

  30. Follow-up/correction to my earlier post. I called Frontier Reservations to double-check the 5k mileage discount and the MasterCard. Unlike the (overseas) rep. on the Barclay’s card, the Frontier rep. was quite clear that one can get the 5k point discount on the companion ticket (down to 15K on domestic flights — including Alaska)….. regardless of which Frontier branded master card you have (or have had within past six months) — one less reason then for me to keep the fee card going forward. (after year one)

  31. Hi Daraius,

    I was approved for the Frontier card with the promotion “Earn 40,000 Bonus Miles after spending $500 in the first 90 days”. I met that requirement within the first 30 days. I was traveling and missed seeing my statement on time – I paid my statement balance one day late.

    After two months, I didn’t see any miles in my account and when I emailed them about the bonus miles, they said that “If the account is not current when the billing cycle closes, any miles earned during that billing cycle will be forfeited” and that I have zero miles in my account!

    I called and spoke to a rep – he said that there is no such thing in the T&C. However, when I emailed them again, they said this clause is there in their T&C.

    Can you advise on how I can try to get the bonus miles + the miles for my spending from Barclays? Thanks in advance.

  32. Tread cautiously with this card. I was awarded all the points promised, but finding award tickets is a nightmare, unless you want to fly mid-week. I made several phone calls as my year was coming to an end hoping to downgrade to a no fee card. I was told nothing was available, call back at a later time. In the end nothing was available and I closed the account.
    They now are showing a balance on my card for the annual fee of $59 + a $20 late fee.
    I’ve been emailing back and forth and they waived the late fee but still wont waive the annual fee, for a card I no longer have.
    Never again with Frontier

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