A NEW economy long haul airline owned by the IAG Group has taken off from Barcelona with almost every item costing extra.
Level is offering a range of different cost options with the cheapest guaranteeing a seat and hand luggage only with additional charges for, suitcase, seat choice, food, drink, wifi, in-flight entertainment , toothbrush and blanket.
Passengers are used to paying for everything on short haul flights but with flights to Buenos Aires, Los Angeles and San Francisco taking up to 13 hours and to the Dominican Republic 11 hours it is likely that passengers will require food and drink at least.
IAG which owns Aer Lingus, BA, Iberia and Vueling has announced that this new option attracted 134,000 advance ticket purchases prior to the first flight departure to Los Angeles last Thursday and will attract a whole new group of travellers flying long haul for the first time.
Whilst much has been made of the need to pay for everything and the lack of trolleys going through the cabin, the new airline is introducing a fleet of new A330 Airbuses and there are all inclusive options in economy and premium economy plus Avios points which can be used on any airline in the group will be awarded.
The initial launch saw no frills flights as cheap as €149 one way but even paying full fare, costs are considerably cheaper than other airlines offering similar facilities.
Seeing off the first flight, Willie Walsh, IAG’s chief executive said: “This is the start of a fantastic new adventure for IAG. The brand has resonated with a new audience, many of whom are flying long haul for the first time. In 2018, LEVEL will increase its fleet to five aircraft and we are considering other European bases for the operation.”