For an Indian tourist on WoW, how cheap is the cheapest flight to US?

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    Earlier this week, Iceland-based entrepreneur Skuli Mogensen announced that his baby, WoW Air, is all set to enter India. The airline left Indians in the air with a never-heard-of price for North American cities: Rs 13,499 one way. We Indians, with our love for everything discounted, saw our eyes widening at the ticket price.

    Mogensen, who founded WoW in 2012, is now neck-to-neck with Iceland’s legacy carrier Icelandair. He claims that he will overtake his formidable competitor in market share by next year. With its foray into the Indian market now, that doesn’t really seem improbable for the air carrier.

    For broke Indians waiting for that big trip to the US, air travel never looked more exciting. The word ‘cheap’ has worked its wonders yet again, and WoW is all over social-media trends and drawing room discussions. Every pair of eyes is set on December 2018.

    But exactly how cheap is the cheapest flight to the US?

    WOW AIR: NEW DELHI TO LOS ANGELES

    We went to the WoW website and tried to book a ticket to Los Angeles. For a one-way ticket to Los Angeles from New Delhi, the following are the specifics.



    Date of Journey: December 7 (That’s the first date available)
    Ticket Price, WoW Basic: USD 309 / Rs 20,921 is the cheapest flight to LA
    Duration: 24 hours 5 minutes, via Reykjavik (KEF)

    WHAT’S INCLUDED IN YOUR TICKET PRICE?

    WoW Basic:
    – Flight ticket
    – Personal item: The ‘personal item’ can be of a maximum weight of 10 kg and no bigger than 17x13x10 inches including wheels and handles. That is basically, a laptop bag or a purse or any item of similar dimensions. For everything beyond that, you need to pay extra.

    Now, if you’re travelling to the US from New Delhi, goes without saying you will need more luggage than that.

    The second cheapest flight to Los Angeles at the time we checked, was China Eastern. Let’s look at the specifics of that.

    CHINA EASTERN: NEW DELHI TO LOS ANGELES

    Date of Journey: December 7
    Ticket Price: Rs 38,875
    Duration: 25 hours 55 minutes, via Shanghai



    WHAT’S INCLUDED IN YOUR TICKET PRICE?
    – Flight ticket
    In Economy, China Eastern lets you carry a cabin baggage weighing 7 kg and two items in check-in weighing 30 kg each.
    – Meals on the way

    So how much would you need to pay on WoW Air for the amenities that a basic China Eastern economy ticket includes?



    BAGGAGE:
    – To add a carry-on baggage to your ticket, the following is the break-up of fees:
    Carry-on bag:
    Per guest, per flight leg. One piece per guest. Size: 22 x 18 x 10 in (11 kg) including wheels and handles. Carry-on baggage allowance is not refundable and not transferable.
    While booking your ticket online: USD 49.99 / Rs 3386
    After booking your ticket online: USD 59.99 / Rs 4063
    Price at check-in desk: USD 69.99 / Rs 4741
    Price at gate: USD 99.99 / Rs 6773

    – To add a 20 kg check-in baggage to your ticket, here is the break-up of fees:
    Check in baggage: One bag, max 44 lbs (20 kg). Per guest, per flight leg. Total bag size for check-in baggage (length+height+width) must not exceed 62 inches (158 cm). Check-in baggage allowance is not refundable, not changeable and not transferable, says the WoW website.
    While booking your ticket online: USD 69.99 / Rs 4741
    After booking your ticket online: USD 79.99 / Rs 5418
    Price at check-in desk: USD 89.99 / Rs 6095
    Price at gate: USD 99.99 / Rs 6773

    Assuming that you booked all of this online while booking your ticket, the following is what you will have to pay for what a standard economy China Eastern ticket provides:



    BAGGAGE:
    Rs 3386 (carry-on)
    Rs 14,223 (Rs 4741 x 3 – check-in baggage worth 60 kg)

    At this point, your one-way ticket to Los Angeles from New Delhi costs –

    Rs 20,921 + Rs 3386 + Rs 14,223 = Rs 38,530

    MEALS:
    – WoW offers only two kind of meals on board their aircraft from New Delhi to Los Angeles:
    Super scrambled eggs (Scrambled eggs with tomato and salad): USD 12.99 / Rs 880
    Pizza Margherita (Pizza Margherita with tomato sauce and cheese): USD 9.49 / Rs 643

    Assuming that you choose one of these per flight – say, scrambled eggs from New Delhi to Reykjavik, and Pizza Margherita from Reykjavik to Los Angeles, your flight ticket will now cost:

    Rs 38,530 + Rs 880 + Rs 643 = Rs 40,053

    The second cheapest flight on this sector costs Rs 38,875. That’s Rs 1178 less than the ‘cheapest’ flight from New Delhi to Los Angeles on December 7 this year. Add the price of water bottles to that, and you’d really have to say, “Wow!”



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