Best Budget Airlines in Europe
The concept of a no-frills airline offering almost dirt cheap fares started with Southwest Airlines in the U.S. in the early 1970s. Southwest is now the world’s largest low-cost carrier, and the budget airline industry has boomed worldwide, most notably in Europe and Asia.
There are a lot of low-cost carriers serving destinations in Europe. Each offers something different, but they all have one thing in common: the really cheap flights. Some are completely no-frills and you are just paying for your seat; anything extra comes with a price tag, such as your luggage. Others, however, offer a little bit more.
If you are planning to go around Europe, take a look at these airlines first before booking that train or bus ticket. You may just be surprised at how cheap flying now can be.
RyanAir, one of the biggest budget airlines in Europe, is Irish-owned. It operates in 28 countries and offers flights to 185 destinations. It’s certainly a no-frills airline, and everything else aside from the seat, has to be paid, including taxes and baggage. If you forget to print your boarding pass in advance, you also pay. If your carryon exceeds their specifications, you pay.
The best things about Ryan air is the number of destinations available, the free carryon, and the fact that you can do everything from home from booking the tickets, printing them off, and checking in online. RyanAir often has seat sales where you can pick up a €30- return ticket to popular destinations such as London, Spain, and Paris.
To get the most out of RyanAir, make sure your carryon matches their specs and print your boarding pass before heading to the airport.
EasyJet offers flights to 600 destinations in 32 countries. It is UK-based, but the founder himself is Greek. EasyJet prices are extremely reasonable and they do not charge for all extras either, such as taxes.
You can take a suitcase up to a certain weight for free, but if you exceed the weight the fee increases considerably. EasyJet also has seat sales throughout the year plus they have also joined forces with hotel and holiday companies and now offer EasyJet holidays and EasyJet hotels. The hotels and holidays are offered in all of its destinations and is a cheaper alternative should you book your flight to combine your hotel with them as well.
Vueling flies to 137 destinations and airports all over Europe, including all three major London airports. The company is Spanish-owned and the head office is based in Barcelona.
Vueling started 10 years ago and has continued to grow considerably. It now has over 90 aircrafts in its fleet. The prices are very reasonable, especially for its domestic flights around Spain. Vueling also offers a 3-tier fare price, where you can choose whether you want extras such as luggage, pre-booked seats, and food, or if you just want to pay for your seat.
Germanwings, the biggest budget airline in Germany, flies to over 120 destinations in Europe. The fares are very reasonably-priced and they offer a slightly better service than other budget airlines. They offer, for example, special packages for business travelers which no other budget airline does.
Business travelers can cancel or change flights up to 30 minutes prior to departure without penalty, can earn award miles, and take advantage of mobile services. If you are a frequent business flier and are looking for a budget airline, Germanwings is definitely the best one in Europe for you.
There are many other budget airlines operating in Europe but these seem to offer something a little bit more than all the others. If you are looking for cheap flights in Europe, one of these airlines will definitely be able to provide it for you.