Budget Carrier Primera Air Adds More US-Europe Routes
Over the last few years, the transatlantic market has become saturated with low-cost carrier’s like Norwegian, WOW and Level. Earlier this year, Primera Air became the newest player in town when it commenced operations with flights from the Northeastern US to London (STN) and Paris (CDG). After announcing flights to Brussels (BRU), Berlin (TXL) and Frankfurt (FRA) over the last few weeks, the carrier will add even more routes to its roster.
Primera plans on launching flights from Boston (BOS), Newark (EWR) and Toronto (YYZ) to Madrid (MAD) in Summer 2019. Daily flights from Newark will commence on July 16, 2019, and Boston will see 3-4 weekly flights starting August 16, 2019.
Note that the airline will be ending its service between Boston and Paris/London in October, and Newark and Paris/London in March 2019. By the end of summer 2019, Primera’s transatlantic route map should look like this, which is pretty extensive for an airline that entered the market a little over a year before.
Primera will be primarily competing with full-service carriers like American Airlines and Iberia from the Oneworld alliance, and Delta and Air Europa of the SkyTeam alliance on its new Madrid routes. The airline will operate its new Boeing 737 MAX 9 on the route, of which it has 20 on order. Right now, Primera’s fleet is composed of five new A321neos and 10 Boeing 7737-NGs.
Both the A321neo and MAX 9 are narrow-body aircraft with a 3-3 configuration in economy, although there is a premium economy section on the A321s with larger recliner seats.
These smaller aircraft aren’t as spacious as wide-bodies but do allow carriers to operate flights at a much lower cost than traditional long-haul flights.
TPG’s JT Genter reviewed Primera’s inaugural flight, which was then operated by a National 757, and while his journey wasn’t perfect, it still “demonstrated perfectly the power of the ultra-low-cost experience.”
Primera isn’t the bougiest experience but it does offer ridiculously cheap fares, especially considering they’re usually nonstop flights between major airports — we’ve recently seen prices fall as low as $63 one-way or $199 round-trip. However, the base fares only include a small carry-on bag — you’ll have to pay extra if you want to select a seat or have a meal on the flight. The airline says that fares from the US to Madrid will start at $149 one-way.
Featured image courtesy of Anna Zvereva / Flickr
Welcome to The Points Guy!
WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points
TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,650
CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners
*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.
- Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
- Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
- With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
- Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
- Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
- Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.