Frontier Withdraws Complaint Against Hotwire

Frontier Airlines Inc.
and Internet travel site
made peace Wednesday.

Denver-based Frontier withdrew a complaint with the federal government about Hotwire after Hotwire agreed to stop running a radio commercial that Frontier deemed deceptive.

Hotwire, which is backed by six major airlines, also has agreed to refrain from using Frontier`s name or likeness in future ads.

“We were happy to be able to resolve this and happy Hotwire won`t be able to run these ads in the future,” said Frontier spokeswoman Tracey Kelly.

Frontier, in a complaint filed May 14 with the Department of Transportation, accused Hotwire of providing misleading information about Frontier airfares and giving the impression that the low-fare carrier is “unknown and untrustworthy.”


Frontier asked the DOT to block San Francisco-based Hotwire from running the commercial.

Another discount carrier, Indianapolis-based American Trans Air Inc., filed a similar complaint a week earlier.

Don Moonjian, American Trans Air`s vice president of marketing, said Wednesday that the airline has denied Hotwire`s request that ATA
withdraw its complaint in exchange for Hotwire pulling ads naming ATA.

“We thought it would be best to see it through with the DOT so there could be a final resolution reached,” Moonjian said.

He said Hotwire received complaints about similar advertising in the past but continued to produce misleading ads, so ATA “didn`t see that agreeing to withdraw our complaint . . . was going to do any good.”

Hotwire spokeswoman Amy Bohutinsky said Wednesday that the company is pleased Frontier has withdrawn its complaint.

“It was never our intention to disparage a particular airline. We still don`t believe we did,” she said. She declined to comment on ATA`s grievance.

Related stories on ITN:

(08/05/2002) Hotwire Stands Behind Radio Advertising Campaign