The down low on low cost carriers

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Budget airlines are springing up all over the world providing cost effective solutions for travellers. The UAE has two such airlines, Flydubai and Air Arabia, which operate out of Dubai and Sharjah respectively. So how exactly do these airlines offer cheaper tickets than traditional airlines? Obvious reasons include not providing food and beverages, and lack of entertainment. Then again, food does not cost much and there are still traditional airlines that provide minimal entertainment at high prices.

One of the main reasons that budget airlines cost less is that you only pay for the services you want. You can choose whether you want to pay extra for options such as checking in your baggage, seat selection or food. While it is great to not have to pay for something you don’t need, remember that when you do want these services you might end up paying a lot more than you bargained for. For example, with most budget airlines you will either not have the option to change your flight dates or you may end up paying almost as much as the cost of your entire ticket.

Budget airlines often tend to operate out of airports with lower landing fees. These airports could be a few hours away from where you want to go and there is a possibility of spending the money you saved on taxi fare. Additionally, it is important to note that airports which separate terminals for budget airlines (like Terminal 2 in Dubai) often tend to have lower grade facilities.

Despite a few drawbacks, budget airlines are a fantastic way to save money. However, do not assume they are always the best bargain. Some traditional airlines are trying to compete with budget airlines and occasionally offer flights as cheap as budget airlines but will all the benefits of a regular airline. Shop wisely.

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