WOW Air is one of two carriers based in the island country of Iceland. They are a young carrier, but they have had the most rapid transAtlantic expansion of any carrier in recent history. The airline is adding new routes in a frenzy. They have added quite a few Midwest destinations recently, and they have also started flights to 8 US destinations in the past two years. The airline, known for its low fares, has a new target in mind. WOW Air adds Dallas airport to its growing list of US destinations.
What to Expect
The flight to Dallas will be operated by one of the airlines A330s. This aircraft has their new premium class product, which is similar to a premium economy on a legacy carrier. The flight will operate 3 times a week. The schedule is as follows:
WW191 Reykjavik to Dallas departing 9:30PM arriving 12:45AM M, W, F
WW192 Dallas to Reykjavik departing 4:10PM arriving 4:45AM (+1 day) T, R, Sat
This utilization is awful, given the plane will be sitting at DFW for over 16 hours. This is by design, however. The airline, similar to their competitor Icelandair, are focused on optimizing customer’s connections to Europe. The purpose of the hours of the flight is to allow people funnel people via Reykjavik.
Word of warning. WOW Air is an ULCC. This means that the airline will charge you for everything, including your carry-on bags. Their prices are very affordable, but that price only includes the transportation from point A to point B.
WOW Air is just Wow at Expanding
WOW Air is one of the most aggressive airlines out there when it comes to expansion. They began operations a little over five years ago. Since then, they have added 33 destinations, with 7 more on the way. This averages to over 4 new routes per year, every year. For a carrier that has 17 planes, this is very impressive. The airline is able to achieve this due to high aircraft utilization. Most of their Airbus narrow bodies fly in from the US, and take off a few hours later to Europe. Once they return from Europe later in the day, they fly out to the US. This allows them to keep their fleet working, and flying as many destinations as possible. It is also worth noting that WOW does not fly to their destinations every day.
Before, the only way to cross the Atlantic was on legacy carriers. Although there was competition, fares tended to be fairly high. In the last few years, we have seen airlines like Norwegian be able to take the concept of defunct carriers like Canada’s Zoom and make it work. Norwegian has been rapidly expanding as they add 787s, 737MAX and soon A321LRs. Other airlines have had to adjust prices, schedules and destinations in order to compete. One recent example is British Airways.
In terms of Dallas, I recently wrote about my expectations for future flights to the airport. Needless to say, this flight was nowhere near my radar. This came as a surprise to me, given that WOW had announced flights to multiple Midwest cities just a few weeks back. This goes to show that now, almost any city can host a TATL flight. I am very happy that WOW is adding DFW, because this will push AA’s TATL flight prices lower. This should be good for consumers. Maybe we will see them add Houston and compete with United as well.
What do you think? Is WOW Air being reasonable in such an aggressive expansion? Will the airline be able to sustain these flights in the coming years? Let us know!
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H/T: One Mile at a Time
Images from: Wikimedia Commons