Low-cost Business Model of Hungarian Airline
More and more European flight routes are operated by low-cost airlines. One of them is Wizz Air, which may not be widely known airline for all travelers. The airline comes from Hungary and it concentrates on flying especially in East Europe. However, Wizz Air has also many routes elsewhere in Europe and it flies also to Middle East. If you are not yet familiar with this purple low-cost airline, you may be surprised how extensive route network it has. If you live in Europe, there is probably a city close to you where Wizz Air flies to.
The main hub of Wizzair is in Budapest Airport. There are also many secondary hubs including but not limited to Gdansk, Warsaw and Kiev. Wizzair's pricing model is based on the low-cost business strategy. Tickets are cheap but they include only flights. All other things must be paid separately. This is the classical low-cost business model.
Safety of flying is always important. Statistically Wizzair has a great safety record and that is a sign that they are operating professionally. We consider them to be a safe airline but flying always has its risks.
Pros Compared to Other Low-cost Airlines
Ryanair and Easyjet are probably Europe's most well-known low-cost airlines. What makes Wizzair better?
Extensive Route Network Especially in East Europe
One of Wizz Air's biggest advantage is the different route network. The airline flies to many East European cities where other low-cost airlines do not fly to. Wizz Air offers flights to East European cities which could be expensive to reach with traditional airlines. In addition they have many destination in the whole Europe with top destinations including Paris, Budapest, Barcelona, Bucharest, Milan, Stockholm and a lot more.
Prices Are Low
Wizz Air offers really cheap flights. According to our Wizzair experiences, you can fly almost 2000 KMs only with 20 euros. Of course it is not common to get that cheap tickets but it is possible. Ryanair may have inexpensive flight ticket offers as cheap as Wizz Air's.
Moderate Charges for Extra Services
Low-cost airlines are cheap as long as you do not buy too many extra services. Luckily Wizz Air has priced its extra services moderately.
Cons to Wizzair's Low-cost model
Airports Are Sometimes Far from Cities
Many low-cost airlines, including Wizz Air, are flying to small airports. These airports are cosy and you can pass through them really fast. Unfortunately they are often far from big cities so taking a bus or a train to the city may take much time and cost even more than your flight ticket. This is a common issue with many low-cost airlines. Wizz Air is not an exception.
Strict Baggage Rules
Wizz Air used to have really strict baggage rules but nowadays the rules are quite usual. You are allowed to take only one cabin luggage. It can weigh 10 kilograms and maximum size of 55 X 40 X 23 cm. Check-in luggage will cost more. By buying priority boarding you are allowed to take another small bag to the cabin.
Wizz Discount Club
Low-fare airlines normally do not have have bonus programs. Wizz Air however makes an exception with their discount club for their customers.
Wizz Air has WIZZ Discount Club that is meant for their frequent flyers. The club membership is not free. For basic membership you must pay 29,99 euros annually. Premium membership costs more. The advantage of the club membership is that you will get exclusive offers and normally at least 10 euros discount for every one way flight and also discount for baggage fees. Your companion will also get the said discounts.
Our Wizz Air Experiences
We have flown 4 flights with Wizz Air. Destinations have been Warsaw, Paris, Turku and Gdansk. All our flights have been operated without any problems. No delay or flight cancellations have occurred. In short term, everything has went safely and smoothly.
Flights from Turku to Gdansk and Back
Last December, we flow a short flight from Turku, Finland to Gdansk, Poland. The route took a little more than 1 hour.
Turku Airport is a small airport and our flight was the only one departing flight that time. We had made check-in online (at the airport it would cost) and everything at the airport went smoothly. We were offered a free check-in for our cabin luggage because the flight was almost fully booked. Unfortunately a customer before us was not that lucky and he had to pay an expensive price for his overweight luggage. So be careful not to take too heavy luggage with.
The Rating of Wizz Air based on Our Own Experiences
Our flights were operated with Airbus A320 and A321 fleets. Planes seemed to be new and in really good condition. There was not much space inside the cabin but no-one expects low-cost airlines to have spacious cabins. Wizz Air's Airbus fleet is comfortable to fly with.
Low-cost airlines do not have free on-board service. Wizz Air has their in-flight cafe where you can buy snacks and drinks.
The selection was not that good but surely enough for short flights.
All our tickets have been extremely cheap. Flying almost free has been great.
Wizzair is not a luxury airline. If you keep in mind that you are flying with a low-fare airline with a really cheap ticket, you must be happy. You get what you have paid for.
There are some reviews circulating on the web that Wizz Air is often delayed. At least all our flights were operated in schedule. Surely some routes may be more sensitive for delays.
Practical Advises for Flying with Wizzair
Flying with Wizzair and flying with other low-cost airlines is a good choice if you just remember to follow the rules. Basically rules do not differ much between low-fare airlines.
Be careful with your luggage size and weight. Avoid buying check-in luggage because it costs much unless you really need to bring such important stuffs with you. Basically one hand luggage must be enough for a short holiday. Only 1 piece of cabin luggage is allowed and Wizz Air is really strict about this policy. If you need another small bag inside the cabin, buy inexpensive Priority Boarding option because it includes an extra small cabin bag.
Do check-in online. Doing it at the airport will cost a lot more.
Join WIZZ Discount club if you plan to fly more than one Wizzair flight in a year. Remember that your companion also gets the discount. When a couple is flying a return flight, the discount is usually 40 euros but the annual membership fee is only 29 euros. So the club is worth the money.
Is Wizz Air a Good Airline?
We would say YES. Wizz Air is a really competitive airline in its low-fare category. We feel that they are more relaxed than their Irish competitor Ryanair.
Check our Resources for Cheap Travelling page to learn how to book your Wizzair flights cheaply.