We all want to travel to Europe on a cheap budget these days.
Budget and discount airlines have sprung up in almost every European country in the last few years – they are all fighting each other for the best cheap airfare. But will we really benefit from these discounted European travel prices or will the cheaper costs of traveling to Europe outweigh the scarcity? Do low-cost airports blind us to the extra hassle of hiding the cheapest price? Take a look at some cheap European travel business and see what we get.
Almost every European country now has at least one non-frills budget airline. EasyJet and Ryanair are becoming well-known and popular in Great Britain and Ireland. Germany has four or five low-cost airlines and cheap airfare specialists. Meanwhile, Sweden has launched its own budget offset called SAS Snowflake.
At first glance the fares that these airlines charge seem ridiculously low; Ryanair has offered their flights almost free in the past – although you still have to pay an airport tax of twenty UK pounds. But where is the catch? Have a catch? Can you really travel to Europe by plane without spending a fortune?
If you want to travel to Europe on a cheap budget, here is the deal:
First, low-fare airports in Europe often use them outside of the city’s provincial airports – often about forty or fifty miles from the city-related center. This can add up to two hours of travel time to your ride at each end. You will also need to pay for bus or train connections from your airport to the city center. Make sure you add this price to the ticket price when comparing prices between cheap airfares and prices offered by mainstream airlines. In most cases the main airline flies you to the city center airport and thus reduces your travel time and the cost of any additional transportation.
If you are not unlucky enough to miss a flight, you can literally get stuck in a very rural airport with all the food shops closed and no way to get back to town or city.
Second, you only get what you get. European budget airlines cannot offer any flight services for food and drink. Or, if they do, they will charge you for it at a premium rate. Coffee, sandwiches and beer can be really expensive. Honestly many flights are only for a period of an hour or two so snacks and drinks may not be such a big deal.
Third – determine the total travel time and compare it to the cost. For example: It takes five hours by train from the very center of Glasgow in Scotland to the very center of London and costs around twenty five UK pounds for each route.
Now – you can take the cheapest flight from Glasgow to London, just to find that both your airports are forty miles away from the city center. It instantly adds three hours to your travel time, without counting the waiting at airports, baggage handling and all the extra hassles that come with it. You will have to pay separately for bus or train journeys from the airport to the city center and vice versa. If your airfare is not very cheap then you can spend more money in the long run for less comfortable travel. If you can, check everything carefully.
Fourth, the quoted cheap airfare ticket prices are for Apex travelers only. You may have to pay a lot more to change your flight times. Cheaper advance prices are usually available only if you have bought well in advance – will add a large premium to the price you bought the day before or during the day. Luggage allowance is also in the middle – often not more than 15 kg or 20 kg per person. More than that and you will face a very high premium on your cheap ticket.
In short – you can travel cheap Europe by choosing your discount airline package carefully. You should not try to weigh all the extra hidden costs as well as compare it to the price of the flight ticket. You should also take into account the extra travel time that may arrive at the provincial airport.
Please note: Don’t hang around too much with these!
Traveling to Europe is fun – but you do it.