Will Ryanair’s Seat Allocation System Split Families?

family-splitTwo months ago, Ryanair introduced a controversial seat allocation system, where if you don’t pay, you are allocated a seat without your approval and without the possibility of changing it. This way, the airline can put 2 people (such as a mother and her child) on 2 very distant seats. Many of us wondered: Will Ryanair do this on purpose, just to force us to pay for a seat? Continue reading “Will Ryanair’s Seat Allocation System Split Families?”

The End of Lowcost?

Flying with lowcost airlines can save you a lot of money.
Flying with lowcost airlines can save you a lot of money.

A lot of traditional airlines find it hard to compete with their lowcost rivals on short-haul routes so they are either shutting down routes or offering discounts on short-distance flights to fill otherwise half-empty planes. Some flag carriers have introduced their own lowcost subsidiaries. Examples include Air France’s Hop and Vueling, whose parent company owns Iberia and British Airways.

It is a far-off prospect but it seems like the civilian passenger airline industry will end up consisting of two distinct types of players, and those won’t be conventional and lowcost.

Continue reading “The End of Lowcost?”

How to avoid EasyJet’s high prices

Tired of working? Dreaming of a week in Tenerife? Get your family and your swimming suit and go for it! Easyjet offers daily flights to Tenerife, so finding the perfect flight shouldn’t be a problem.

But wait! The final price of a return flight from London to Tenerife South for a family of four (travelling without hold luggage!!!) is £1,785! This is the price you get on the EasyJet website on the 12th of July 2012, for a return flight departing on the 12th of August 2012 and returning on the 19th of August. If this is way too much for you to pay, you should definitely continue reading in order to find out how to get a much lower price for that Easyjet flight, in that exact period! Continue reading “How to avoid EasyJet’s high prices”

How long does it take to make a short flight?

On Friday, December 2 2011, the 20:40 Easyjet flight EZY/U2 02899 from Milan Malpensa to Naples left on time. It should have been a short 1 hour and 10 minutes flight. After approximately an hour of flight, the airplane captain gave passengers the bad news. Continue reading “How long does it take to make a short flight?”

American Airlines seeks bankruptcy protection

American Airlines

On November 29, 2011, the parent company of American Airlines announced that it was filing for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11. The move does not come as a surprise, as all the major US competitors of American Airlines, including United Airlines and Delta Airlines sought relief from debt under the bankruptcy law years ago (in 2002 and 2005, respectively). Continue reading “American Airlines seeks bankruptcy protection”

Thomas Cook – problems and consequences

Thomas Cook Airlines
Thomas Cook Airlines

Last week, the biggest UK travel group, Thomas Cook, delayed publishing its 2011 results as it was renegotiating the terms of its credit agreements. Following this announcement, the group saw its shares drop by 75% (from 41,62£ to 10,20£) in one single day. After a long week-end the Thomas Cook managers reached an agreement with the banks and received a new £100m loan for the business. After the good news came out the group’s shares jumped by 50%, but the share value is still much lower than it was one week ago. Continue reading “Thomas Cook – problems and consequences”

What are your rights if your flight is late or cancelled?

A court in Cluj Napoca, Romania has recently sentenced the low cost airline Blue Air to reimburse 4 passengers for the cost of their plane tickets from Bucharest to Cluj Napoca with Tarom – Romanian Airlines, and to pay 250 EURO per passenger worth of compensations. Continue reading “What are your rights if your flight is late or cancelled?”

If your luggage is late, you will be entitled to a refund

This is the latest decision of the US Department of Transportation, which is currently drafting a rule that forces airlines to refund the luggage fees in case luggage gets lost or arrives late.

Currently, almost all major US airlines charge between $15 and $45 per checked-in bag. The only exceptions are Southwest Airlines and JetBlue, which allow 2 and respectively 1 free hold bag. But if your luggage gets lost or arrives a couple of days later, no airline will give you a full cash refund. If your hold baggage arrives late, Alaska Airlines will offer you the choice between a $20 credit for future flights and 2,000 frequent flyer miles as a compensation. Delta will give you a $25 credit for future flights. If your luggage gets lost, you can request the refund of the luggage fee when you file the complaint with the airline.

While some airlines try to compensate the unlucky travellers, this is not a general practice in the industry. In addition, compensations usually come as “discounts for future flights”, which most of the time are not used by unsatisfied customers.

At this point, I am left wondering: is this good or bad news? Continue reading “If your luggage is late, you will be entitled to a refund”