Sun Country Airlines Review: Minnesota’s Secret Airline

Sun Country Airlines Review. Plane waiting at gate for passengers to board.

Sun Country Airlines is a small Minnesota based airline that has recently transformed into an ultra-low-cost carrier. I decided to fly them and this is my honest Sun Country Airlines Review.

When I tell people I was flying Sun Country Airlines I am usually asked “Do you mean Southwest? or what is that? It’s true, this small airline is relatively unheard of, and if you are not from Minnesota. So is Sun Country Airlines a good deal? Lets dive in.

Sun Country Airlines has recently gone through a large overhaul of its cabins. The Minnesota based airline has transformed into an ultra-low-cost carrier. Some of these changes include getting rid of the typical first-class seating that you would see on a plane, and following similar budget airlines and allowing a personal item as the only included item in your ticket price. Bringing a carry-on, or checked bag costs extra.

Sun Country Airlines, as the name implies will take you from a colder destination in the north to somewhere warmer in the south. The destinations that they fly to include other places in the United States, Caribbean, and Central America. It is important to note that many of these flights are actually seasonal and do not have year-round service.

If I am going to visit Minnesota I tend to look to see if there is a good price on Sun Country Airlines because I am not traveling with much. Usually I can find a one way for under $50 if I am flexible with dates.

Booking a Flight on Sun Country Airlines

I booked a one way flight from Minneapolis to Phoenix for around $59 after all the taxes and fees. Sun Country Airlines also fly out of many smaller airports, which might make connections a little easier if you live away from a far international airport.

A recent change that they had added since the previous time I had flown is they added a point system. Similar to other airlines points are built by spending points on flights, vacation packages, or using their credit card.

Sun Country Airlines Review Flight Price
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After choosing your flight it will bring you to an option for your luggage. A personal item is free, and is the only included item. A carry on bag will run you $30 USD, and so will your first checked bag. The second and third checked bag options were $40 USD each. I had been packing light, so I was just traveling with my personal item.

As far as seating going  there is Best, Better, and Standard class sections. The best section is in the front of the plane and costs $40 USD, the better section which is considered to be the exit row which is around $24 USD and the standard seats can cost anywhere between $9 to $29 USD.

Checking In for My Sun Country Airlines Flight

Currently Sun Country Airlines does not have an app, so choices for check in are either online or at the airport. This is kind of a bummer to me because I love the ease of an app. Especially while flying on a low-cost airline where I do not need to bring any extra bags.

There is however online check-in up to 24 hours before your flight. For the most part it is pretty mobile responsive and some of my flights have offered me to add my boarding pass to my wallet on my phone. If you were hoping that seat selection would be free on the check-in site you will be disappointed. If you want to pick your seat it still costs extra.

Sun Country Airlines flies into and out of Terminal 2 in Minneapolis. This is kind of nice because it has less traffic, shorter security lines, and shorter distances between gates.

The major downside to this is that the food options are pretty lacking. Similar to other low-cost airlines Sun Country Airlines does have some weird hours that they fly and at times there will be no restaurant open.

Sun Country Airlines Review - Check in Area

Boarding on Sun Country Airlines

The boarding process on Sun Country Airlines is probably the biggest issue I have had while flying the airline. It started out as any normal typical boarding with people needing extra time getting on the plane, and those with families.

After this they called zone 1, and pretty much everyone went up to the gate. There was really no enforcement of people boarding that were seated in a different zone. This is a bummer for anyone who paid extra to have priority boarding.

None the less I waited for my zone to be called and got on the plane.

Cabin and Seat on Sun Country Airlines

Currently Sun Country Airlines operates a fleet of all Boeing 737-800’s. Sun Country Airlines revamp of the cabins have allowed the plane to have a 3 by 3 seat arrangement throughout the whole plan.  According to Sun Country there is 27 best seats, 33 better seats, and 123 standard seats, allowing for a total of 183 passengers.

Every row of seats does come with a USB charging port located in the lower section of the seat in front of you. If you are sitting in the “Standard” seats like I was during this flight, you can expect to have between 29 to 30 inches of legroom. In comparison this is a little larger than other budget airlines like Frontier who offer 28 inches of legroom, but it is smaller than a full class airlines such as Delta who offer around 32 inches of legroom.

You are still in luck however; you can choose a seat in “Better” or “Best” class and you will be allowed more legroom. In the “Better” class these seats will offer you 32 inches of legroom, and in the “Best” class these seats offer 34 inches of legroom and 5 inches of recline versus the two 2 inches of recline in “Best”. Just remember, one of these seats will cost you more money than the $9 USD it costs for a seat selection in “Standard” class.

As far as the bathroom goes, it is very similar to that on any other economy flight. It is small and might be hard for a taller person to fit comfortably. During my flight I found the bathroom to be quite clean.

Food, Beverage, and In-flight Entertainment

If you compare this low-cost airline to others such as Spirit or Frontier one small difference is that there is a complementary beverage give on the flight. There are no small complementary snack options like pretzels, or crackers. Snacks and alcohol are available for purchase from the flight attendants with the use of a credit card.

Sun Country Airlines Review Food Menu

There are no seat back entertainment systems aboard Sun Country Airlines. They do have complimentary Wi-Fi that you can connect to your phone, tablet, or computer. Connecting to the free Wi-Fi does allow you to view some content that the airline offers for movies, and TV shows. However, I thought the selection was not that great and just stuck to what I had downloaded before the flight.

Future Flyer of Sun Country Airlines

Overall I enjoy flying Sun Country Airlines when possible. There is a limited selection of destinations, and I think that it would be harder to take a longer trip on the airline without any additional fees.

For the time being if there is a short weekend that I am going to Minnesota, the fares are hard to beat.

4 Replies to “Sun Country Airlines Review: Minnesota’s Secret Airline”

  1. Leslie Patten says: June 15, 2021 at 1:29 pm

    I was a frequent flier using Sun Countey prior to the restructuring of both planes and fare scale. I miss first class. It made my frequent trips to Minnesota so much better. Three and three doesn’t make anyone happy and the absence of food and nice drinks makes it an even more dreadful experience . Sun Country has moved into nearly last place for flying. It is a bad deal no matter how cheap and flying out of msp at 7:00 am? What are you thinking???

  2. M. Suzann Webb says: June 28, 2021 at 6:28 pm

    My daughter, granddaughter & I just flew from San Antonio & back on Sun Country. We were very happy it was a direct flight, only problem was that there was a mechanical problem & after hours of delay they said that the flight would not leave until the next morning! Since it was a short trip to begin with (Monday-Friday) cutting a whole day was really sad. Not having any luck on getting refund for the lost time either.

    1. Charlie says: July 28, 2023 at 10:26 am

      You probably meant it was a nonstop flight because a direct flight has a stop somewhere without a plane change.

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