$99 one-way fares from California to Europe? Fares are highly restricted, but yep, they are there… and available for a handful of June flights from San Francisco and Los Angeles.
One of the newest low-fare transatlantic carriers to fly to the U.S. is Iceland’s Wow Air. Over the last year it has introduced nonstops between Reykjavik and Boston and Baltimore/Washington at similar bargain basement fares.
WOW Air is an ultra-low-cost carrier that makes its money from ancillary passenger fees– for example, you are only allowed a carry-on bag of up to 11 pounds. If it weighs more than that, you’ll pay a fee of $48 each way. If you want to check a bag you’ll pay a stiff $67 fee each way. To choose a seat ahead of time, you’ll pay between $10 and $48, depending on legroom. See this for the full list of extra fees.
Nonetheless, those $99 one-way fares are hard to resist. But you won’t find a $99 fare on the return leg. To get back, the cheapest one-way fare is $199, making round trips $398.
Flight time between San Francisco or LAX and Reykjavik is nine hours and the carrier will use a wide-body Airbus A330-300 on the route that has 340 seats onboard. Seat pitch ranges from 30 to 34 inches.
The $99 fares will get you to Iceland (one of the world’s hottest destinations right now), but you can stop over in Reykjavik and continue on to other European cities (such as London, Paris, Berlin, Frankfurt, Dublin, Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Stockholm) for as little as $199 one way.
With a required change of planes in Iceland, this is not your average business traveler’s airline.
Still, if you are headed to Iceland, have some extra time to get to Europe, or just want to be the first on your block to fly Wow Air, it does have an interesting twist on seating: Although all its aircraft are one-class, you can decide how much legroom you want — paying extra for more, of course.
The website jaunted.com recently tried out Wow Air’s service, and found that its regular seating on the A321s it flies from the East Coast have a knee crunching 30-inch pitch. But travelers can opt up to “L seats” with 33 inches for an extra $24, or even more to “XL” seats with 35-inch pitch for a $33 premium. The reporter noted that since most of the passengers were apparently budget-focused, her XL seat choice gave her a row all to herself.
Inaugural flights from San Francisco start on on June 9th and in Los Angeles starting on June 15th.
SFO to Iceland nonstops will be available five days a week; from LAX, four days a week with connecting flights on to other European destinations. The $99 deal from SFO is only good on June 10, 17 and 24 and on Saturdays between September 24 and November 19.
From LAX, the $99 deal is only good on June 21 or 28, or on Tuesdays between September 27 and November. The $199 fares for continuing flights to Europe are similarly restricted.
Launched in November 2011, WOW air now connects twenty-seven destinations across the U.S. and Europe with the Icelandic capital.
For more information on flights to Iceland and North America see Wow Air’s website
Would you fly WOW Air to Europe? Why or why not? Please leave your comments below.
NOTE: Be sure to click here to see all recent TravelSkills posts about: United packages Economy Plus with amenities + Ride-sharing firm goes out of business + Bucket list for air travelers + Useless travel gadgets + ‘Uber of the Skies’ dies
Resolved to get your finances in order this year? Let Personal Capital, a free investment monitoring service, show you how: