Tel Aviv to New York for $149. That isn’t a typo, but rather the rock-bottom airfare for flights that will begin in September by the Icelandic carrier Wow Air. The same price applies to a host of other U.S. and Canadian destinations and is only $50 more for Miami, Los Angeles and San Francisco.
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Even by the standards of low airfares Israelis have begun to enjoy since the Open Skies aviation agreement with the European Union went into effect four years ago, Wow’s prices have caused a great deal of excitement. Tickets went on sale through the airline’s website on Tuesday.
But now for the fine print. The advertised fare is one-way and applies on dates that most travelers won’t find attractive. There are extra charges for checked-in baggage, food, choice of seat and changes of date. There’s also a stopover in Iceland and for travelers who want to go no further, the one-way fare in $99.
For the budget-conscious, however, Wow Air is not at all a bad option. It will be operating four flights a week, leaving at 8:30 a.m. Waiting time in Reykjavik for connecting flights is as little as 90 minutes and no more than four hours, depending on the city. Wow is flying Airbus A321neo jets. It’s overall fleet of jets is among the youngest in the industry, Wow says.
“No one has ever offered such cheap prices to North America, and we’re proud to bring competition to Israel. I hope it enables people to visit here, and that it will help Israelis to travel,” Wow CEO Skuli Mogensen told a news conference launching the service this week in Tel Aviv.
Wow plans added destinations to the Far East in 2018-19.