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North Atlantic Airways: What you need to know before you fly

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From Avero Airlines Breeze Airways From US carriers to Europe’s North Atlantic Airways and Play Air, low-cost airlines have been popping up like bamboo shoots in recent times, allowing passengers to stretch their budgets further by offering simple, low-cost flights with fewer amenities than full-service airlines.

For travelers looking to save money on their transatlantic trips, Nordic Airways operates low-cost flights between selected airports in Europe and the U.S. Here’s everything you need to know about this budget airline.

What is North Atlantic Airways?

Norse Atlantic is a Norwegian low-cost long-haul airline headquartered in Arendal, Norway. It was founded in 2021 and is scheduled to depart for its first flight from Norway’s capital, Oslo, in 2022.

North Atlantic’s fleet includes 15 Boeing 787 Dreamliners.

Does North Atlantic Airways fly to the US?

Yes, Norwegian Air operates transatlantic flights between Europe and the US, as well as Asian flights between Oslo, Norway and Bangkok, Thailand.

According to the Norse Atlantic website, more routes are planned to be added in the future.

Norwegian Air’s Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft have two cabins: Economy Class and Premium Class. Economy Class seats are configured in a 3-3-3 configuration, while Premium Class seats are configured in a 2-3-2 configuration.

All seats in both cabins are equipped with seatback TVs, USB chargers and power outlets.

Premium class offers passengers an exclusive cabin, complimentary in-flight meals, wider seats with 43 inches of pitch, blankets, pillows, earplugs and eye masks, making it even more appealing.

🤓Geek Tips

The “pitch” of a seat is the distance from any point on the seat to the same point on the seat behind it in the same cabin.

The two service cabins are subdivided into multiple fare bundles, a pricing model commonly seen among low-cost airlines.

Each class has three fare levels: Lite, Classic, and Flextra. Lite fares have the highest change or cancellation fees ($200) and don’t include a carry-on bag, while Flextra fares allow free changes and cancellations, and include carry-on and checked bags, meals, seat assignments, and priority boarding.

Economy Lite, Classic, Flextra

Economy cabin tickets are divided into three fares: Economy Lite, Economy Classic and Economy Flextra. Choose one of these options during the booking process to customize your flight experience. Here’s what’s included in each fare:

Premium Light, Classic, Flextra

North Airlines’ premium cabin tickets are also divided into three fare classes: Premium Lite, Premium Classic, and Premium Flextra. Here’s what’s included in each fare class:

Does Norse Atlantic partner with other airlines?

Norwegian Air operates a relatively small fleet of aircraft and has a limited route network, but the Norwegian airline partners with several other low-cost airlines around the world through its Dohop connecting service, which allows customers to book their own connecting flights.

Norse Atlantic partners with the following airlines:

When you book a connecting flight with a Dohop connection with any of the airlines listed above, the flights are booked on one ticket but the segments are operated by multiple airlines.

In the example trip below from London Gatwick to Austin, Texas, the two flight segments are operated by Norse Atlantic and Spirit Airlines respectively.

When you book through Dohop connections, you are travelling with multiple airlines on the same ticket, so you will need a visa to enter the connecting country and your checked baggage will need to be collected and checked again at the connecting flight.

The good news is that if your flight is delayed or canceled and you miss your connecting flight, Dohop will rebook you on another flight at no extra cost.

Is Norse a good option for budget travelers?

North Atlantic Airways calls itself a low-cost airline, but are their prices really as low as advertised? Let’s look at a few scenarios.

Basic ticket price

We started our search on Norse’s website and quickly discovered they had a sale going on – round trip tickets to Europe for as low as $362. However, we quickly discovered that the sale price only applied to certain routes and dates.

For example, an itinerary quoted at $362 would depart in March and return in May. Most leisure travelers can’t travel that long and would therefore opt for shorter trips.

For example, say you want to take a quick summer trip from Miami, Florida to Oslo, Norway. Norse lets you view airfares in a list view or a calendar view. The calendar view lets you see a month at a time, which is useful if you have flexible travel dates.

The first price shown is for Economy Lite and Premium Lite fares, which means if you’re booking a higher fare class such as Classic or Flextra, the price will be higher than the first price shown.

Based on this calendar, I found that a round-trip Economy Lite fare between Miami, Florida and Oslo, Norway is $475. This ticket type only includes personal items that fit under the seat in front of you, and you will be in the last boarding group.

Depending on your travel style, you’ll probably have to pay out of pocket, at a minimum, for additional carry-on luggage.

Ticket price after adding options

If you want all the comforts of a full-service airline, you can enhance your ticket with extras like carry-on and checked bags, seat choices, and even meals. Let’s take a look at how these options affect the final ticket price.

🤓Geek Tips

If you want to bring a small carry-on suitcase or check in a larger bag, you don’t necessarily have to purchase a higher fare class. You can choose an Economy Lite fare and add baggage during the booking process.

For example, on the Miami-Oslo route, additional baggage beyond a personal item will incur the following charges:

  • $45 for a small carry-on bag (22 pounds or less).

  • A light checked bag (33 pounds or less) costs $60.

  • $75 for a standard checked bag (34-49 pounds).

  • $170 for heavy checked bags (50-70 lbs).

The price listed is for a one-way trip, so for a round trip you will have to pay double the price.

Let’s be reasonable and say you want to add a carry-on suitcase or backpack weighing 22 pounds (10 kilograms) or less to your trip, which will increase your total airfare by $90.

Selecting your seat will cost you an additional $25-120 depending on which seat on the plane you want. If seat selection isn’t important to you, you can skip the seat selection and just make do with a randomly assigned seat.

If you choose the Economy Lite fare, meals will also cost extra – be prepared to pay $20-30 per meal.

You’re then asked if you want to pay $20 for priority airport check-in and another $15 for priority boarding, then you’re offered a fast-track option to get through security for $12, or access to an airport lounge in Oslo, Norway, for $38.

Let’s say you choose an Economy Lite fare and add the following to it:

  • Carry-on bags cost $90 on both the outbound and return flights.

  • Aisle seats are $70 in both directions.

  • Two vegetarian meals each way (four meals total) cost $100.

Custom airfare between Miami, Florida and Oslo, Norway is currently $735.

Cost compared to full-service airlines

Now compare this with a similar itinerary on a full-service airline.

At the time of writing, Oneworld Alliance Fares to partner airlines are around $1,100, but there are longer layovers in both directions.

North Atlantic is the only airline that offers direct flights on this particular route, and considering it is cheaper even with all the extras, it is your best option to save both time and money.

Custom and Bundle Ticket Costs

Are fare bundles more economical than tickets that can be added a la carte?

For example, let’s say you’re considering the Economy Classic bundle, rather than the stripped-down Economy Lite, which includes a personal item, carry-on bag, checked baggage, and one meal service. Norse sells this bundle on the aforementioned Miami-Oslo route for $655.

In this case, adding the same benefit a la carte to an Economy Lite fare would cost:

  • Carry-on bags cost $90 on both the outbound and return flights.

  • A standard checked bag costs $150 round trip.

  • $60 for two meals (one meal each way).

If you book an Economy Lite fare for $475 and add the items listed above, your round trip ticket will be $775, so in this case, you would save $120 by purchasing the bundled fare.

🤓Geek Tips

Do the math before booking your flight, especially if you’re flying with budget airlines that charge per service.

Is Nordic Airways a good airline?

Generally speaking, yes. Norse Atlantic Airways reviews are generally positive, praising the airline’s use of Boeing 787 aircraft, its cabin crew and comfortable seats. However, it’s important to manage your expectations appropriately and be mindful of baggage limits and additional fees.

Before you buy, be sure to compare bundle prices and the prices of a la carte add-ons against the rates of full-service carriers to ensure you’re getting the best price possible for what you’re receiving.

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