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The pros and cons of cheap airfare

The phenomenon of low-cost airlines has become unstoppable from the 90s until today. However, cheap flights have both a number of advantages and disadvantages that we show below.

Advantages

In addition to the savings for the passenger buying a low-cost ticket, other advantages can also be mentioned. Here we mention all the positive aspects of charter flights:

Low prices: these airlines offer the most competitive prices in the market, so it is common to find flights to the most requested destinations in low season for less than one hundred euros round trip, for example. This means that, nowadays, traveling by plane is a means of transportation available to 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 was lost with the elimination of intermediaries by low-cost airlines, has been won from another sector, so the customer who decides to resort to a travel agency just as satisfied.

Acquisition of the ticket at the moment: with this type of airline, the need to buy the ticket well in advance has been extinguished. In this way, we can even book our ticket the day before the departure of the flight.

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Photo by Arie Wubben on Unsplash

Disadvantages

By cons, not all are advantages when it comes to weighing the possibility of acquiring a cheap flight. The unique prices of this type of flights are achieved precisely by the suppression or reduction of quality of other services. In the following list we show you what are and other disadvantages:

Suppression of services: as we said, the benefit of these airlines has its origin in that its goal is to reduce costs at all costs. They achieve this by eliminating the usual free press and catering service on conventional airlines, charging an extra fee if the total number of kilograms allowed for checked baggage, fuel savings, etc. is exceeded.

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 customer to contact the airline in case of doubt or complaint, with which the service loses much quality in general.

Telephone number for payment: the telephone number of contact that usually has these offers the companies is habitually a 902 line, which entails an additional cost for the client, which supposes another source of benefit for the airline.

Secondary airports: it is common for most of these flights to take off from secondary airports. This reduces the 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, with what the client must value if it really suits him to buy a charter flight or not.

Absence of 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 calling without the need to purchase two tickets.

Limitations on luggage: all low-cost airlines put restrictions on the weight and measurements of luggage, which is a great inconvenience for tourists whose stay abroad will be long-term. This is possibly the most common disadvantage among customers of these types of companies.

Additional fees: the above limitations must be added to the fact that, if the baggage is checked, 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. In addition, most low-cost airlines do not allow carrying more than one piece of carry-on luggage.

Minimum compensation: in case of loss of luggage, cancellations, delays or loss of flight, these companies offer the minimum compensation, given that they are not responsible for almost any aspect of your flight.

Interior
Photo by JC Gellidon on Unsplash

Recommendations

Given these advantages and disadvantages, we offer 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 set ourselves and, on the other, they usually appear in small print, camouflaged between several images or expressed in words of meaning ambiguous. Read the conditions very well when buying a low-cost flight Read the conditions very well when buying a low-cost flight. 

Rights of air passengers: for the above purpose, it is highly advisable to read the brochure on the rights of air passengers offered by the European Commission (EC).

Organization: it is normal for any tourist to be confused by so much variety in offers of cheap flights and airlines. Therefore, our advice is that you do not leave it for the last minute: sit quietly to make a comparison between the different possible options.

Estimates: if the airplane you choose does not take off from the airport closest to your place of residence, it would be advisable to see if you are really going to be profitable traveling to any other airport, either by spending on gasoline, taxi, train, bus, etc.

Dimensions in the baggage: check the regulations and the conditions imposed by each airline on its website to avoid surprises when your check-in or when you arrive at the airport.

Preparation of the suitcase: given the large number of restrictions imposed by these airlines in relation to checked baggage and hand luggage, the advice we give you is obvious: take the minimum, that is, what you really need during your trip.

Boarding pass: low-cost airlines require you to print the boarding pass from your website, action that is enabled 15 days before your flight departure. Therefore, make sure you have downloaded and printed the boarding pass before the scheduled departure date.

Ultimately, the choice is up to you.  There are those who like to fly the major airlines but there are those who prefer the choices and advantages of flying a low-cost airline.

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