This year, the dream of round-trip airfare from the U.S. to Europe for under $500 with taxes and fees included could become a reality.
You read right folks. Norwegian Air Shuttle made the confident announcement in early February, pricking excited ears all over the world while also rubbing the travel industry the wrong way in the process.
Low priced round-trip flights between Europe and the U.S. isn’t a new concept, and airlines that have tried their hand at it have failed. Others see it as a gimmick that can’t possibly be achieved, and Norwegian Air must be scheming by avoiding union rules and risking passenger safety.
But alas, Europe’s third largest budget airline has already announced flights between select cities in Scandinavia and New York, Fort Lauderdale, Los Angeles and Oakland in the U.S. And it doesn’t stop there; plans to add nonstop flights to London this summer are already in the works.
Despite mass criticism and earlier failed attempts by other airlines to drop the price, many believe that Norwegian Air has got what it takes to make this work for the long haul. But, it won’t be easy, as told by air transport consultant John Strickland to The Guardian, stating “I’d say Norwegian has a better chance than most – it has learned the ropes of low-cost efficiencies. But it has got to go through all sort of hoops to make it work now.”
Bjørn Kjos, the big boss behind Norwegian Air, believes that now is the time to make moves, stating that the internet, more fuel efficient planes and a global shift in economic power will make this a success- but time can only tell. According to Time, a recent search for a round-trip flight between New York and London next October came up to a total of $636 on Norwegian while the same trip on British Airways came out to $1,093. Those prices include taxes and fees and boy do they look good. Keep your fingers crossed fellow globe trotters!