Assessing the downside of a revolution in low-cost transatlantic air travel
As the concept of “cheap” fares emerges on the transatlantic air travel routes, the industry is witnessing “revolutionary” claims from a couple of airlines. (4/16/2007)
While Zoom Airlines is to introduce London – New York flights from Ł129 each way, including all taxes, fees and charges in June, Ryanair may launch a separate airline that would fly long-haul between Europe and the US with no-frills trans-Atlantic airline offering fares as low as $US12.
Fares may be attractive but what can one expect from such airlines?
Reports belfasttelegraph.co.uk: “They may be cheap. But don’t expect them to be cheerful. The new era of inexpensive transatlantic flights may prove to be an endurance test for the passengers who will flock to them.” The repot added: “Out-of-the way airports, endless transit bus journeys; all the irritations that come with bargain basement European air travel will be replicated in spades in the US. But that is unlikely to stop anyone.”
According to telegraph.co.uk, the Zoom package becomes less attractive later in the year, when the main carriers will also be offering return flights for less than Ł300. Much will hinge on what comes included in the price of the ticket. Virgin Atlantic claimed its overall package represented better value for money.
“We offer more on board than you would get from Zoom, we are a proper full-service airline delivering better value for money,” it reported. “We don’t charge for listening for music.”
According to the same report, British Airways, which has increased the frequency of flights from Heathrow to JFK and Newark to 11 per day, said it welcomed competition.