As a general rule of thumb when flying with these budget airlines, be prepared to travel light, light, light! There’s a reason why airfare is so cheap. But sometimes flying on the cheap is the only way to go. Here are some general rules to keep in mind.
5 Tips for Flying on the Cheap
1. Invest in a luggage scale.
You will need it. Each of these airlines have different weight limits. If you go over, you pay a certain amount for each kilo you’re over. So, avoid any surprises. I picked mine up for $7 from Primark and it was pretty accurate.
2. Limit yourself to one carry-on when you board the plane.
Purses, man bags, duffles and etc. will be considered as additional carry-on.
3. Pay for check-in baggage 48-72 hours before your flight.
Shell out the money for more luggage weight if you can to get bags checked-in for peace of mind. Traveling is stressful enough without having to worry about if you made weight or not. It’s like you’re training for a fight or something. It’ll be a hell of a lot cheaper than on the day of when they will take you to the cleaners.
4. Know what part of the plane you’re boarding.
Front, middle, or back? Easyjet allows for boarding from both ends so you don’t want to dash to the front of the plane if your seat is at the back.
5. This one is specific to RyanAir but PRINT OUT your boarding pass.
They will charge you 70 euro if you don’t have it printed out — that’s 70 euro for each boarding pass. It doesn’t matter if the flight info is on your phone. They don’t care.
I learned these valuable lessons during my recent London-Greece adventure. It was my first time flying this way where I had to actually buy a luggage scale and use it. If I didn’t have to lug my dinosaur 17″ MacBook Pro around, I would’ve been fine, but it accounted for nearly half of my allotted weight. My next laptop will definitely be smaller and lighter!
My Personal Experiences
Be aware that once you make your connection to Reykjavik in Iceland, they will be all about the one bag policy. Do not mess with them. No ifs, ands or buts. Don’t think that because you flew out of Boston or Gatwick carrying two bags on board that you’ll be fine. It’s a ruse! They will get you at Reykjavik.
When I flew out of Boston, the WOW Air check-in person let me through even though my carry-on weight was over. I even boarded with my purse and my carry-on with no issue. None. But then, I got to Reykjavik in Iceland and WOW Air was not having it. One bag — ONE bag! I was like madwoman trying to jam my purse into my rolly bag. They tell you this when you’re at the boarding gate.
The Mister got dinged as we were heading back to the States. He hadn’t experienced WOW Air up until that point. We left Gatwick airport with no problems even though the Mister was carrying a small duffle bag and a backpack. However, when we made our connection to Reykjavik in Iceland, he got slapped with a $70 fee to check a bag because there was so way that duffle was gonna fit into the backpack.
It’s kinda bullshit, but now we know and hopefully you will too.
We were flying out of Athens to Santorini and, luckily, our friend gave us a head’s up about the boarding pass situation where they will ding you for 70 euro if you do not have it printed out.
As a matter of fact, when the Mister and I were in line waiting to board, one gentleman found out the hard way. He was livid. I don’t blame him.
I really didn’t have any issues flying from London to Greece via Easyjet. I would however, stick to the one bag rule of thumb just to be safe. Also, know where your seat is. You board from both ends of the plane. Luckily, the Mister was on top of this and steered us to the right direction. Fun fact: some refer to Easyjet as Sleazyjet.
Traveling can be an anxiety-ridden experience, but I hope that what I’ve shared here helps make it less painful.
My mistakes, your gain 🙂