Based in Las Vegas, Nevada, Allegiant Air is a leisure-focused airline with a goal of getting people to warm locations where they can relax.
They have a fairly limited route network compared to larger carriers, flying to mostly smaller and lesser-used airports within the United States and Puerto Rico — but they do cover ~117 destinations at least a couple of times per week.
Allegiant is what is known as an ultra-low-cost carrier, meaning they price their tickets as low as possible and then charge passengers for absolutely everything else. The fares may be well under $50 one-way, but by the time you are done, your flight could cost significantly more.
Want water or soda on board? You will pay for that. Want to have a seat assigned before check-in? That can cost up to $80 for premium seat locations on longer flights. Need to take a carry-on bag? That will run you up to another $75 for your flight.
As you can see, costs can really add up. As with any ultra-low-cost carrier, it is important to look at the total cost of travel before you purchase, not just the low fare.
The nice part about this pricing model is that you never have to pay for something you don’t need. If you don’t care where you sit, are just taking a small backpack for a weekend trip, and don’t need any food or drink while on board, you truly can fly for a really low price.
Once you’ve taken a look at the overall cost and decided to fly with Allegiant Air, you want to be prepared for your flight. That starts with boarding.
Rather than being one of the confused passengers wandering around the gate area not knowing where to go, you should take a few minutes now to learn how boarding with Allegiant works. Let’s take a quick look at the details of their boarding process.
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Allegiant Air Boarding Zones
Allegiant Air begins the boarding process with 4 named zones. Once those are all taken care of, they move on with 6 numbered zones of general boarding.
For general boarding, passengers are placed into zones based on whether they have a carry-on bag or not and what row they are seated in.
Passengers without bags needing to go in the overhead bins are boarded first, from back to front of the plane. Then passengers who need to stow bags are boarded, again from back to front.
Even if you choose not to purchase a seat assignment in advance, you will be placed in a specific seat when you check in for your flight. Once your seat and row are assigned, you will be placed in the corresponding boarding zone.
Here’s an overview of exactly who gets to board with each group on Allegiant:
- Anyone needing additional time or assistance
- The boarding process may be paused to give this first group a little extra time to get situated before resuming with the next group
- Passengers who have purchased Priority Access
- Allegiant World Mastercard® holders
- Active military personnel and their dependents
- Passengers boarding with car seats and strollers
- Passengers seated in the exit rows
- Passengers without carry-on bags seated in rows 25-40
- Passengers without carry-on bags seated in rows 1-24
- Passengers with carry-on bags seated in rows 25-40
- Passengers with carry-on bags seated in rows 10-24
- Passengers with carry-on bags seated in rows 1-9
If you want to sit together with the people you are traveling with on your flight, you should pay to select seats ahead of time. Allegiant Air makes no guarantees that your party will be able to be seated together if you wait until check-in to get free seat assignments.
Unlike Frontier, who gives passengers who have purchased carry-on bags priority boarding, Allegiant boards passengers with carry-on bags in the last 3 groups. This is a great example of why you should be familiar with the boarding procedures for the airline you are flying!
In this case, the 2 airlines are both low-cost carriers, but they do the exact opposite when boarding passengers with carry-on bags.
Hot Tip: Like Spirit Airlines, Allegiant Air will charge you to have an agent at the airport print your boarding pass. For Allegiant, the fee is a little lower at $5 for each pass. To avoid paying this, either check in and print your boarding pass at home or use the Allegiant app to check in and pull up your boarding pass on your smartphone.
How to Build up Your Allegiant Air “myAllegiant Points” Balance
We include this section here since we’re all about using points for travel, and we have sections on how to earn points for each airline in our boarding procedures series.
However, when it comes right down to it, myAllegiant Points aren’t really something you want to go out of your way to collect.
On redemption, the points are only worth a single penny each — there is no way to get a higher value out of them. Also, they can only be redeemed for a discount on Allegiant flights or other travel booked through Allegiant Air’s travel partners.
If you fly with Allegiant regularly, they do have a co-branded credit card that might be worth getting, but more for the flight benefits than the points earning.
The Allegiant World Mastercard earns 3x points on Allegiant purchases and 2x points on dining — but at the fixed 1 cent redemption level, you’d be better off putting your spending on one of the many cash-back cards that earn the same or more.
There are also several cards that reward generously for dining and purchases at restaurants, which in our opinion offer a far superior option than Allegiant’s card.
As we mentioned, the Allegiant World Mastercard does come with a couple of useful benefits if you fly on a lot of Allegiant flights. All cardholders get complimentary Priority Boarding, and if you show your card on the flight, you get 1 free beverage.
But with an annual fee of $59, you would have to take a whole lot of flights to make holding the card worth it (though it would theoretically be possible to use these benefits to your advantage and come out ahead).
As an ultra-low-cost carrier that focuses on leisure travel, Allegiant Air is sure to have plenty of passengers who are not regulars when it comes to air travel. Those people may be less familiar with check-in, going through airport security, and certainly with boarding the airplane.
By learning the details of the Allegiant boarding procedures ahead of time, you can be sure that you won’t add to the airport confusion — and who knows, you might even be able to point someone else in the right direction.
Being comfortable with the process from the moment you get to the gate will start your travel day off right and make your whole trip a little bit better. Next time you fly with Allegiant Air, you’ll be ready to go!
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