Took a quick trip to Vegas this week using Allegiant Air out of Santa Maria. The fares have dropped since the summer season is over and got a $39 fare each way. Of course that’s not what it cost me as there are plenty of other charges that you have the opportunity to pay for. One is priority boarding, which allows you to get on the plane first. I didn’t select this so not sure how much it cost but there were only a few people that boarded when they called it so not sure if it’s worth it. The next potential charge is seat selection. I did go for this and it cost me about $11 each way. I found that not that many people went for this either and chose general seating instead for the 50 minute flight.
You would think that paying for priority boarding or seat selection would get you on the plane first so you can get an overhead bin space for a carry on. But, what they did in Santa Maria is hand out 60 tags for carry on baggage (first come, first get). I got to the Santa Maria airport about an hour and fifteen minutes before the takeoff time and they were already out of the tags so I had to check my bag (no charge though). I got to the Vegas airport extra early so I would get one of the tags but they said they didn’t do that in Vegas (the employee then told me they ran out of the tags to use).
I got a rental car as part of the airline package (a compact car from Alamo). I picked the car up on Wednesday afternoon and returned it Friday morning. Here’s the cost breakdown:
|FED EXCISE TAX:||
|SEAT SELECTION FEE:||
Not a bad price but when I returned the rental car on Friday, I got a $49 charge for taxes that weren’t included in the package price. So, flight and compact car cost me around $244.
The flight out from Santa Maria leaves at 1:40 pm which isn’t bad. But the flight back from Vegas leaves at 7:40 am. I pulled an all-nighter on Thursday as I was playing in a poker tournament until about 1 am. Even with getting to the Vegas airport at 4:30 AM (after returning the rental car), the line for security was still pretty long. Too bad Allegiant’s return flight isn’t in the afternoon.
It’s nice to have the Allegiant Air option as any other airline that went to Vegas from SLO or Santa Maria costs a lot more. It’s also nice that Santa Maria doesn’t charge for parking like the SLO airport does.