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$99 flights to Europe? Budget airline Play is landing in Washington, DC

August 23 2022
3 min read
Play Airlines plane
$99 flights to Europe? Budget airline Play is landing in Washington, DC
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Travelers heading to or from the nation's capital will have a new low-cost option to cross the pond.

New Icelandic budget carrier Play Airlines announced it'll commence operations at the Dulles International Airport (IAD) on April 26, 2023.

The Reykjavík-based carrier will deploy a mix of the Airbus A320neo and A321neo aircraft on the new daily route.

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Flights will connect IAD with the airline's hub at the Keflavik International Airport (KEF) in Reykjavik, Iceland. From there, travelers can connect to many popular European destinations, including Paris, Madrid, Dublin and many more. Travelers can book flights directly on the airline's website.

If you've never heard of Play Airlines, you're likely not alone. The new budget carrier started operations in 2021, with service to London’s Stansted Airport (STN). The carrier quickly expanded with more routes to Europe and new service to the U.S. that began earlier this summer. Play is deploying a similar model to the now-defunct Wow Air.

Play operates an ultra-low-cost model, with flyers paying for more ancillary services, including checked baggage, seat assignments and meals.

(Photo by Ben Smithson/The Points Guy)

That said, one of the biggest reasons to choose a Play flight is the fare. The airline's unbundled fares on the new Dulles route begin at just $99 each way. Note that the promotional introductory offer is available for booking through Aug. 26, and you'll need to buy a round-trip ticket to take advantage of the lowest fares.

While the onboard experience may not be the most comfortable, it'll certainly offer an affordable way to get to Europe.

The new Dulles flight will complement Play's existing service to the nearby Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI).

Perhaps the biggest news is that Play is poised to become the first low-cost option for flights to Europe from Dulles. The airport is a key hub for United Airlines, and together with the carrier's Star Alliance partners, there are plenty of nonstop flights to destinations across Europe.

However, flyers headed to or from Dulles have historically needed to pay up for the convenience of nonstop flights.

With Play's new service, perhaps United and its partners will feel the pressure to compete on price. In that case, everyone will be a winner — both Play's new passengers, as well as those opting for nonstop flights operated by more established airlines.

Featured photo by (Photo by Ben Smithson/The Points Guy)
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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The Marriott Bonvoy Business Amex is a stacked card with a rewards rate that will help you earn bonus points on everyday and business-related purchases. You'll earn 15 elite night credits each calendar year, and receive automatic Gold elite status. Finally, the free night award certificate with a redemption level of 35,000 points or less can get you hundreds of dollars in potential value each year.

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