Should you book with a budget carrier who offers you the lowest airfares, or fly in style with a premium airline for an added cost? Find out now!
One of the recent and most significant changes in civil aviation is the “Growing Popularity of Low-Cost Carriers aka Budget Airlines.” These budget carriers offer lower flight tickets and come with no-frills when compared to superlative premium or traditional carriers.
To Opt for Luxuries or Not?
Oftenly, travellers flying with budget carriers have to forfeit the luxury amenities that come with full-service airlines. That means no onboard meals, narrower seats, no in-flight entertainment options, or airport lounges.
With that said, there’s no denying the fact that budget carriers like AirAsia, Scoot, Spice Jet offer mumbai to singapore flight for lowest airfares in the industry, thereby making flying highly affordable to all.
Now, we come to the big question, “Should you splurge on flight tickets to travel in luxury or should you take the cheaper route?” This one’s a bit difficult. While there’s no one answer that fits all, here are a few differences between budget carriers and premium airlines. Hope once you have found out what’s available and what’s missing, arriving at a decision would be easier.
5 Major Differences between Budget Carriers and Full-Service Airlines
- Onboard Meals
Fancy a gourmet meal or a drink while flying 25,000 metres above sea level? Then you should head the traditional route. Most budget carriers do not include free meals in their flight tickets. From mineral water to a measly cup of noodles, you have to pay exorbitant charges on board. However, most full-service airlines include full meals on longer routes and snacks on shorter routes.
While this isn’t a deal breaker, if you want to be served like a boss and keep your tummy full, then you’re better book tickets with a full-service airline.
- Check-in Luggage
Most full-service airlines offer good amount of free check-in baggage allowance for all. However, with low-cost carriers, you have to pay an extra fee for checked-in baggage beyond a certain limit, and this limit is usually quite low. This fare could end up making the overall ticket as expensive as that of premium airlines.
If you’re a light traveller and manage with a couple of handy cabin bags, then low-cost carriers are ideal for you. However, if you travels with two or more giant trolley and carry-alls? Then, opt for full-service airlines.
- In-flight Entertainment and Charging Points
There’s no denying the fact that flight journeys are a test to your patience levels, especially longer intercontinental routes. After all, one can marvel at vast skies and clouds, for only a limited time. If you’re easily bored and love to spend your airtime catching up on the latest movies or TV shows, then opt for full-service airlines.
Additionally, premier airlines like Etihad Airways and others offer onboard Wi-Fi connectivity and individual charging points for your electronic gadgets. This means no more in-flight boredom. On the other hand, low-cost carriers lack in-flight entertainment options to keep the overall costs down.
- Seating and Leg Space
Ever felt that you’re packed like sardines in a can when you’re flying? All thanks to the ingenious methods of low-cost carriers to increase seating capacities. Most budget carriers fly A320 Airbus, and they try to squeeze in as many passengers as possible to improve the overall revenues. Since these airlines make only a tiny profit from each ticket; it makes sense to cram as many passengers as possible to make it profitable.
On the other hand, the high fees you pay for traditional airlines give you more leg space, comfortable seats with ample padding, blankets, pillows and other amenities.
- On-Time Arrival & Departure
Premium airlines stick to the schedule more often compared to budget carriers. This is because budget carriers have a higher utilisation of aircraft which enables them to offer you cheaper fares. However, on the downside, if a particular segment is delayed, it causes a snowball effect: meaning your flight could take-off hours later than the scheduled departure time.
If you’re travelling on business trips or to conventions and meetings, you’d better book with full-service airlines to avoid worst-case delays.
There’s no arguing the fact that low-cost carriers have sparked a revolution in air travel. Cheaper fares, ample choices, and competitive rates all have given rise to intense competition among the airlines. All this translates to improved amenities and higher savings for the air traveller.