Just a week after Primera Air collapsed, rival transatlantic airline Norwegian has dropped fares on thousands of tickets from London Gatwick to America to under £135 one way.
Six routes from Gatwick across the Atlantic are in a flash sale, with a one-way to Boston and Chicago priced at £134.90. There are 2,500 seats for Boston, and 500 seats to Chicago available for that price.
Other destinations in the sale include New York JFK, Orlando, Fort Lauderdale and Tampa, Norwegian's newest route, in Florida. Routes to New York have 750 tickets available for £144.90, while Orlando (1,500 tickets), Fort Lauderdale (2,000 tickets) and Tampa (750 tickets), have seats available for £149.90.
There are catches. Weekends and public holidays are blackout dates; and the flights are Norwegian’s LowFare, which are non-refundable and come with a baggage allowance of one cabin bag weighing less than 10kg. Onboard meals are also not included. Passengers also have to purchase a return fare. A search on Norwegian's website on 11 October for a return from Gatwick to Boston during 1-6 December comes in at just under £235 return.
The sale ends on the evening of Monday 15 October and is based on departures from 1 December to 28 February 2019.
Earlier this week, Norwegian announced it was the largest non-US airline to serve New York, carrying 1.67 million passengers to or from New York from January to July 2018. United is still the biggest carrier serving America’s largest city.
Norwegian’s sale comes as budget airlines are squeezing services to the bare minimum. Ryanair, Europe's largest budget carrier, announced in August that passengers can only bring a bag no bigger than a handbag or laptop case onboard for free; and earlier this week, budget airline Wizz Air followed suit. The changes take effect from 1 November.
We previously reported that until the end of October, passengers flying from Gatwick to New York have a 50 per cent chance of flying on an ancient Wamos Air jet, which Norwegian has wet-leased due to ongoing engine trouble with its Dreamliner.