Denver-based ultra-LCC Frontier Airlines pilots, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA), ratified a five-year contract worth more than $1 billion on Jan. 10.

According to ALPA, 77% of the 99.1% of pilots who cast ballots supported the agreement.

The new contract, which becomes effective Jan. 16, includes an average across-the-board pay increase of 53%, in addition to a $75 million ratification bonus, the highest amount ever awarded on a per-pilot basis.

“With this agreement, Frontier pilot compensation now reflects the pilot market. From our high monthly guarantee to our industry-leading monthly credit override, our pilot compensation is consistent with the industry patterns for narrowbody pilots,” ALPA Frontier master executive council chairman Tracy Smith said. “Our new contract retains superior work rules and scheduling flexibility and improves our retirement, benefits, and job security.”

Frontier and ALPA reached an agreement in principle for a new contract in November 2018 following more than two-and-a-half years of contentious negotiations. Last July, ALPA sued Frontier management in federal court for bad-faith bargaining, but dropped the suit in November following the agreement in principle.

Frontier president and CEO Barry Biffle said the new agreement gives its pilots “best-in-class salary and benefits while also ensuring Frontier’s continued growth.”

The airline said in a statement that the new contract is the sixth collective bargaining agreement reached between Frontier and its represented employees in just over two years.

Ben Goldstein,