What do you know about low-cost airlines?
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What do you know about low-cost airlines?

Classification of low-cost airlines

There are three types of low-cost airlines:

  • "Classic" or "Ultra";
  • "Average";
  • "Low Fare" - airlines that are closest to regular companies.

Classic low-cost carriers have the following characteristics:

  • Low ticket prices, which are directly related to the destination of the trip and the time of ticket purchase;
  • The possibility of obtaining certain documents only through call centers or on the official websites of airlines;
  • Strict restrictions on checked and carry-on baggage;
  • Food service available for an additional fee only;
  • Arrival at secondary airports;
  • No connecting flights;
  • Flights in low-cost carrier waiting rooms (nineteen rows with 5 seats in each).
  • Classic budget airlines include AirAsia (Malaysia), Ryanair (Ireland), WizzAir (Hungary, Poland), Tiger (Singapore), Cebu Pacific (Philippines).

The "Average" budget type, unlike classic ones, can operate intermediate flights, and some planes land at central airports. In some cases, passengers receive tickets indicating their seats or boarding sequence numbers. This budget category includes EasyJet (UK), Germanwings (Germany), and Vueling (Spain).

Low Fare low-cost carriers differ from regular companies only in that meals and baggage are paid for separately, i.e., not included in the ticket price. Also, companies of this type may organize ticket sales at reduced prices. Low Fare airlines include companies such as Air Berlin (Germany), Air Baltic (Latvia), Pegasus Airlines (Turkey), and the Arab company Air Arabia.

Budget airlines and used aircraft

Many believe that low-cost carriers were previously used by other airlines, but this is not the case. According to information posted on the official website of the largest European low-cost carrier, Ryanair, its fleet consists of over 300 aircraft, the average service life of which does not exceed 3.5 years. Meanwhile, the average service life of aircraft of the Ukrainian national carrier is 12-13 years. Most budget flights are operated on Airbus and Boeing aircraft.

Budget airlines and airports

Low-cost carriers only cooperate with secondary airports, allowing them to save on airport fees and reduce ticket prices. The planes of these companies spend most of their time in flight, so the time spent at the airport is minimized. Because of this, low-cost carriers do not use airport shuttle services. Their planes taxi directly to the terminal, which speeds up service and reduces ticket prices. According to low-cost carriers, it is more profitable to increase the number of flights by reducing ticket prices, increasing the number of passengers, and consequently, profits.

Morning and evening flights

To reduce costs, low-cost carriers operate most of their flights early in the morning or in the evening because airspace is busy during peak hours, and flight delays are a common occurrence. Moreover, airport fees significantly increase during the day, which represents unwanted expenses for budget companies. Of course, there are exceptions to the general rule. For example, WizzAir operates flights from the Zhulyany International Airport in Kyiv at 13:00, 14:00, and 17:00.

Inexpensive route

In order to reduce costs, low-cost carriers operate flights only from one airport to another, and stopovers and layovers are rare occurrences. Exceptions are made only by "Low Fare" companies.

Travel documents of budget companies

Ticket sales are carried out exclusively through the online resources or call centers of low-cost carriers, which determines reduced prices, allowing to avoid commissions of specialized booking systems or commercial agents.

All about low-cost companies

When purchasing a low-cost carrier ticket, you pay only for the flight, and additional services are available for an additional fee. Paid services include:

Fee and payment processing fee by credit card;

  • Baggage transportation, and in some cases, carry-on baggage;
  • Seat selection or "Priority Boarding" service - priority boarding rights;
  • Additional legroom available in the front rows;
  • Food service.

It is worth noting that purchasing a ticket at ticket offices is more expensive than online procedures.