Two airlines are now offering flights between Europe and America for only $69. WOW Air (From Iceland) and Norwegian Air said, they can lower ticket prices this much due to them having the latest energy efficient aircrafts, the strengthening US dollar and the recent decline in jet fuel prices.
When fuel prices were at a high several years ago, there was an increased incentive for airplane manufacturers to produce more fuel efficient airplanes. Airlines are now reaping the rewards of the innovation that caused and those rewards are now being passed on to everyday consumers.
All this, without any carbon taxes, without any government regulations or incentives. This came about because of free market capitalism, our favorite phrase.
Some countries like Canada are trying to implement carbon taxation. What do you think will happen to these low prices as a result?
Instead of making it costly to use carbon and hurt everyday producers and consumers, the best solution is to let the free market solve our problems. Wow Air and Norwegian Air show how this is possible.
When the government takes money from these hard working producers, they will be less able to innovate and find solutions to real life problems. Like Ringo Star once said:
Everything the government touches, turns to crap.
Before you book your discount flight, you should know these ticket prices are for one-way tickets only. These are offered in limited quantities and layovers may occur. Nonetheless, this is great news for travellers.
If you are interested in booking one of these low cost flights, here are a few things you need to know.
No Assigned Seating
These discount fares might be more for the solo travellers, since it allows the airlines to place you where they want. You can pay extra if you want to choose your seat, but we think most people probably wouldn't care too much.
A Real Possibility of Delayed Flights
Both cariers offering the discounted fares have a limited number of aircraft capable of making the long cross atlantic flight. WOW flies seven Airbus A321 and three Airbus A330, and Norwegian flies 12 Boeing 787 Dreamliners (with 20 more ordered). In other words, if one flight is cancelled or delayed, there won't really be a replacement coming along as easily as a major carrier would do.
This might actually be a good thing. Wow Air has every flight stopping in Reykjavik, Iceland before continuing on to either America or Europe. However, they also allow travellers to take an extended layover of several days before continuing on their journey.
There's No Free Lunch
If you don't have any snacks with you and need some food, you'll have to pay for it. That isn't necessarily out of the ordinary though. Most travellers are used to that by now.
Wi-fi and Entertainment Options Will Vary
Norwegian Air offers free Wi-fi and even free in flight entertainment that is supposed to be quite good. If you are flying the Icelandic route, however, Wow Air has no Wi-fi available or entertainment package, so make sure you utilize Netflix's new download feature before boarding.
When we find successes in the free market, everybody wins. Not only is this good for these airlines in increasing their customer bases, but it's also great publicity for them. Obviously this is also a win for consumers. Who wouldn't want to pay 70 bucks for a flight to the other side of the world?
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