Nowadays, traveling is not a luxury anymore. Even budget travelers can fly with comfort and pleasure. One of the reasons for this phenomenon is the appearance of low-cost airlines. You can get an airway ticket for just a couple of dollars if you know, where to search.
Of course, this fact also made many people doubt: isn’t it too good to be true? This has led to many rumors and myths about “low-costers” and their services. Here are the 10 most common myths about low-cost budget airlines:
Low-cost airlines arrive God-knows-where and getting from the airport can be even more expensive, than flying the regular airline.
Yes, and No.
Low-cost airlines truly do arrive at smaller airports. The main reason is the size of airport taxes. However, the location of a particular airport and the price of getting to the city can vary greatly.
For example, getting from Paris-Beauvais airport to the city will really cost you around 20 euro, which is even more than some low-cost ticket price.
On the other hand, we were able to get to Milano from Milano-Bergamo airport for just 5 euro. In Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, the minor airport, which caters low-cost airlines, is located within the city borders and can easily be reached by public transport, unlike the main international airport.
Also, many cities, such as Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, or Corfu Town in Greece, have only one airport, situated not far from the city, or even within the city borders. In fact, we were a little short in cash at the end of our trip to Greece, so we just walked to Corfu airport from the city center. It took us just 30 minutes by foot, which is not long at all.
And of course, no one will make you leave the plane somewhere in the field. Although, I’ve heard such a myth too 🙂
Cheap flights are dangerous.
Low-cost airlines update their air fleets more often than the regular ones. They believe, it is cheaper to buy a new airplane than to maintain and constantly repair an old one.
Also, old aircraft break down too often, and low-costers can’t afford to cancel flights all the time, as these are additional spendings for them. So, if you really think about it, it is probably safer to fly a low-cost airline than the regular one.
You may not get the seat on the plane.
The number of tickets issued always matches the number of seats on the plane. Of course, unpredictable situations happen sometimes. But it is, in fact, more common for regular airlines, than low-costers.
On the other hand, there may not be enough space in the luggage locker if you board late. So, try to enter the plane as soon as possible. Pay attention, where you seat is and which entrance you should use. Some airlines put this information on the boarding pass, so read it carefully.
The flight can be suddenly canceled or delayed.
Of course, it can. But this is true about all airlines, and not just low-costers. The schedule can also change sometimes. Due to this fact, the best time to book your ticket is around 2-3 months before the flight, and not earlier.
If your low-cost flight was canceled at the last minute, don’t worry. You will be given an exchange or a refund, just as with regular airlines.
Low-cost flights are always late.
Yes, and No.
Any flight can be late, and it doesn’t apply to low-costers only. In fact, low-cost airlines try much harder to stick to their timetable, as their planes usually do 2-4 flights a day.
In my experience, low-cost flights arrived earlier almost every time. However, it doesn’t mean you should choose risky flight change options: it is always better to stay in the airport for a little bit than to miss your flight.
Advertised price is not final.
Yes, and No.
You need to proceed the booking process up to an end, to see the final price of the ticket. Some booking fees, taxes, etc. can sometimes be added, but it is not common. Pay attention, however, when booking a low-cost ticket.
Most definitely, you will be offered additional services, such as insurance, choosing a seat on the plane, food, drinks, booking a hotel, or arranging a car rental service.
So, if the price of your ticket changes, when you proceed to the next step, you should check, what services were included. If you really added something without a purpose, go back and cancel it.
Low-cost tickets are always cheaper than regular.
If you search the same destination with a low-cost and a regular airline, the low-coster will most probably have cheaper fares. However, it cannot be true for 100% different situations.
For example, sometimes regular airlines make huge ticket sales, and you can buy a ticket at a simply funny price. Or you can get lucky and find “hot” ticket at the last minute. Or get a birthday discount. In all of these cases, your ticket will be even cheaper, than the low-cost flight.
Also, keep in mind that low-cost ticket price, in the most, only includes hand luggage. And if you are used to traveling with a huge suitcase, you will have to pay an additional baggage fee, which can be even higher, than the price of your ticket. And don’t forget about the taxi fee you will have to pay, to get to the airport if your low-cost flight departs at night or early in the morning.
The destination attractiveness also matters. During the high season, low-cost airlines may require higher prices, than even the regular companies. And of course, ticket fares tend to grow closer to the departure date (for low-costers, the difference can sometimes be around 4-5 times between the starting and the final prices).
Low-cost airlines don’t give any guarantees.
Low-cost airlines play according to common rules. Yes, they never offer joint flights and don’t take responsibility, if you are late for your next plane. On the other hand, they try to avoid force majors and unpredictable situations as much as possible, not to have any additional spendings.
You can only fly low-coster with hand luggage.
Ticket price in low-cost airlines only includes hand luggage, it is true. But you can take as much luggage as you want, as soon as you are ready to pay for it. On some destinations, the price of the ticket, plus the luggage fee, will still be lower, than the same route at regular airlines.
Keep in mind, though, it is always cheaper to pay for your luggage online (even after buying your ticket), than doing it in the airport, right before departure. You can add any amount of luggage on your personal page on the airline’s website, up to 3 hours before the flight leaves.
If you don’t want to pay additional fees, however, learn to travel with hand luggage. Not only is it cheaper, it is more convenient too:
- You don’t have to get in line for baggage registration
- You don’t have to wait for your luggage after arrival
- Your luggage will not get lost, as it will be with you on the plane
But keep in mind the general rules for things you can and can’t have in your hand luggage if you decide to travel light.
When you arrive at the airport for you low-cost flight, you suddenly find out about additional fees you have to pay.
This can only happen for two reasons:
- You didn’t do the online check-in for the flight, as most low-cost airlines demand. If you do it at the airport, the service will be paid, and usually, it costs a lot! So, don’t forget about the online check-in. Plus, it is much more convenient to do from home, than to wait in a huge line at the airport.
- Your hand luggage or baggage doesn’t meet the strict size and weight demands of low-cost companies. Find out, which are the luggage size and weight limits of a particular low-coster, in advance, and stick to them. Otherwise, you will have to pay an additional fee at the airport.
Keep in mind: if you are not sure about your luggage, you should arrive at the airport, at least 4 hours before the departure. In this case, if you need to pay an additional fee, you will still have time to do it online, using your phone or tablet, and it would save you a fortune!
However, both situations are, in fact, the result of people’s inattentiveness. So, if it happens to you, you have no one to blame, but yourself.
If you travel on a low budget and want to use a low-cost airline, all you need is be attentive, avoid common mistakes and travel with pleasure!
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