The phenomenon of low cost companies has been unstoppable from the 90s until today. However, flights They have both a series of advantages and disadvantages that we show you below.
Below you have an index with all the points that we are going to deal with in this article.
According to data collected by the Institute of Tourism Studies (IET) from Spain, more than 80% of airline tickets sold from 2012 to date correspond to low cost flights, which places these sales seven points above the standard airlines.
Of this 80%, the majority of tickets were sold by the low cost airlines leaders in Europe: easyJet y Ryanair. Thus, this revolutionary business has been echoed around the world and more and more low-cost airlines continue to emerge.
So much so, that most tourists confess feeling overwhelmed every time they have to buy a plane ticket because they don't know which one to choose. Its success is largely due to advertising campaigns so aggressive that these companies employ.
Below you can see an example with the video of the airline's advertising campaign easyJet of the year 2012:
In addition to the savings for the passenger to buy a low cost ticket, other advantages can also be mentioned. Here are all the positive aspects of charter flights:
- Low pricesThese airlines offer the most competitive prices on the market, so it is common to find flights to the most popular destinations in low season for less than one hundred euros round trip, for example. This makes, today, travel by airplane be a means of transport within reach of any traveler. The lower cost of these airline tickets is largely due to the elimination of intermediaries.
- Benefits for travel agencies: traditional travel agencies have also benefited from this phenomenon and have begun to offer a new service: they themselves look for the flight and buy you the low cost ticket. In this way, what had been lost with the elimination of intermediaries by low-cost airlines, has been gained from another sector, with which the client who decides to resort to a travel agency ends up just as satisfied.
- Acquisition of the ticket at the moment: With these types of airlines, the need to buy the ticket well in advance is extinct. In this way, we can even reserve our ticket the day before the flight departs.
On the other hand, not all are advantages when it comes to weighing the possibility of acquiring a cheap flight. The enormous prices of this type of flight are achieved precisely by the suppression or reduction of the quality of other services. In the following list we show you what they are and other disadvantages:
- Suppression of services: As we said, the benefit of these airlines comes from the fact that their objective is to reduce costs at all costs. They achieve this by eliminating the usual free catering and press service in the conventional airlines, the charging of an extra fee if the total number of kilos allowed for checked luggage is exceeded, fuel savings, etc.
- Impersonal attention: Another way to save on expenses is to opt for the disappearance of physical offices or any other area accessible to the public with which to interact directly with the airline in the event of a claim, for example. This makes it more difficult for the client to contact the airline in case of doubt or complaint, which in general loses a lot of quality.
- Pay phone: the contact telephone number that these companies usually offer is usually a 902 line, which entails an additional cost for the customer, which is another source of profit for the airline.
- Secondary airports: It is common for most of these flights to take off from secondary airports. This reduces accessibility for many tourists, who are forced to travel to the airport by taxi, train or any other means of transport. Obviously, this whole process makes the trip as a whole more expensive, so the client must assess whether it really is convenient to buy a charter flight or not.
- No connections: Low-cost airlines do not usually offer connections between airports. In this way, the customer is forced to buy two different tickets, instead of having the possibility of making a stopover without the need to buy two tickets.
- Limitations on luggage: all low cost airlines place restrictions on the weight and measurements of luggage, which is a great discomfort for tourists whose stay abroad is going to be long. This is possibly the most common disadvantage among clients of these types of companies.
- Additional fees: to the above limitations we must add the fact that, if when checking in the luggage, its weight exceeds the limit imposed by the airline, the customer must pay an extra fee for each extra kilo. There are also restrictions on hand luggage, which must have specific measures. Also, most low-cost airlines do not allow you to carry more than one piece of hand luggage.
- Minimal compensation: in case of loss of luggage, cancellations, delays or loss of the flight, these companies offer the minimum compensation, since they are not responsible for almost any aspect of your flight.
Given these advantages and disadvantages, we offer you a series of recommendations to make it easier for you to buy a low cost ticket:
- Terms and Conditions: it is very important to read the conditions before accepting any clause that appears during the purchase. Otherwise, we may accept services that we did not want and that we have not noticed because, on the one hand, we have not noticed and, on the other, they usually appear in small print, camouflaged between several images or expressed in words of meaning ambiguous.
- Air passenger rights: For the above purpose, it is highly recommended to read the brochure on air passenger rights offered by the European Commission (EC).
- Organization: It is normal for any tourist to feel confused by such a variety of cheap flight offers and airlines. Therefore, our advice is not to leave it to the last minute: sit down quietly and make a comparison between the different possible options.
- Estimates: if the plane you choose does not take off from the airport closest to your place of residence, it would be advisable to assess whether it is really going to be profitable for you to travel to any other airport, either because of the cost of gasoline, taxi, train, bus , etc.
- Dimensions in luggage: check the regulations and conditions imposed by each airline on their website to avoid surprises at check-in or upon arrival at the airport.
- Preparation of the suitcase: Given the large number of restrictions that these airlines impose in relation to checked baggage and hand luggage, the advice we give you is obvious: take the minimum, that is, what you will really need during your trip.
- Boarding pass: low-cost airlines force printing boarding pass from its website, an action that is enabled 15 days prior to your flight departure. Therefore, make sure that you have downloaded and printed your boarding pass before your scheduled departure date.
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