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Getting from the US to Europe can be an expensive process — choosing between carriers and routes seems to be a never-ending and tedious endeavor to find the best deal. Starting as soon as 2017, you may not have to look as long and hard to find a great fare. Norwegian Air CEO Bjørn Kjos said yesterday that the airline hopes to offer flights from select US cities to Europe for $69 each way. Yes, you read that right, just $69.
How will the airline outprice their competitors and offer flights for less than WOW Air’s $99 flights to Iceland? Kjos said the airline will offer service in small airports that currently have little to no international service — such as New York’s Westchester County Airport and Connecticut’s Bradley international Airport — with final destinations like Bergen, Norway and Edinburgh. This move is part of Norwegian’s push to take sales away from the traditional carriers, many of which don’t fly nonstop from smaller cities in the US to cities in Europe for such a low price tag.
In order to accommodate the large number of expected bookings when the actual routes and prices are announced, Norwegian plans to add five more 737 MAX jets from Boeing to its fleet in addition to the 100 it already has on order. This is a plane that’s equipped to fly the transatlantic route, but is compact enough to take off and land at smaller airports. What’s not clear is how these smaller US airports will handle immigration — it’s possible that could be handled before boarding in Europe, of course, but that’s a costly affair.
Although the prices are low and may seem appealing, does that mean you’ll actually want to fly a low-cost carrier like Norwegian — especially on such a long route? There are many factors to take in to consideration, with the most obvious being additional fees for checked bags, food, beverages, priority boarding, pillows, blankets, etc. After these are added to the final amount of the ticket, there’s a chance the final price could be in the range of a ticket on one of the traditional carriers, or perhaps even higher.
Remember when booking on Norwegian to use a credit card that earns additional points on airline purchases, such as the American Express Premier Rewards Gold Card or Citi Prestige (3x on airfare) or the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x on all travel purchases).
H/T: NBC News
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