Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

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tj218
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Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by tj218 » Sat Oct 19, 2019 11:59 am

I'm in the midst of planning a European vacation with my wife and kids for next summer. We want to go to Vienna but found flight prices were expensive for the 4 of us. I realized if you get to a European city it is much cheaper to then fly on (separate ticket) from that city to pretty much anywhere in Europe. We've already booked our round-trip flight to London where we plan to spend a few days before heading off to Vienna then ultimately heading back to London. It is less than half the cost by booking tickets this way vs. to Vienna on a single ticket.

US to Vienna on a round trip ticket was $3800+
vs.
US to London round trip $1300
London to Vienna round trip $400-1000 depending on airline)

To minimize delay/cancellations impacting our flight home I've built in a cushion of a day back in London before our flight home. EasyJet (Gatwick) AND Austrian Airlines (owned by Lufthansa) out of Heathrow, both offer multiple daily flights to Vienna, the EasyJet tickets are about $400 less (including nickel & diming for everything) than the Austrian Airlines tickets. My concern is will we be stuck in limbo like a Spirit or Frontier Airlines flight in the US after a delay/cancellation or is EasyJet much more reliable for departures?

Any experiences with either EasyJet or Austrian Airlines appreciated!

Annabel Lee
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by Annabel Lee » Sat Oct 19, 2019 12:29 pm

Both EasyJet and Austrian are good airlines. But for this price difference, you’ll find me on EasyJet every time. Have flown quite a bit on EasyJet out of both Gatwick and Stansted to Barcelona, Prague, Madrid, Amsterdam and more with 100% on time performance and no operational issues whatsoever.

I fly United almost exclusively in the U.S. and it’s very difficult to tell the difference between UA economy and EasyJet economy.

For that matter, it’s probably a bit difficult to tell the difference between UA and Austrian economy class, but I digress.

The only real differences on Austrian are 1) the ability to earn UA miles as they’re a Star partner - but again, not worth the price difference, and 2) the airport. I generally prefer LHR to LGW but no real difference in experience; easy train access to Zone 1 via multiple options.

PM with more questions and enjoy your trip!
Last edited by Annabel Lee on Sat Oct 19, 2019 12:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

fujiters
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by fujiters » Sat Oct 19, 2019 12:31 pm

I have flown with both EasyJet and Austrian and have had more pleasant experiences on them than with US airlines. I've only flown 2 round trips with both though, so perhaps my lack of complaint is merely insufficient sample size. All flights on time and no problems with service. Austrian still serves small meals (sandwiches) included in base airfare, which was a pleasant surprise.
“The purpose of the margin of safety is to render the forecast unnecessary.” -Benjamin Graham

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snackdog
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by snackdog » Sat Oct 19, 2019 12:40 pm

There used to be a reality show about UK airports. The EasyJet stories were always the most outrageous and the customers furious at their treatment. It was fun to watch!

ralph124cf
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by ralph124cf » Sat Oct 19, 2019 1:48 pm

British Airways also flies multiple times a day to Vienna from LHR. The seats are fractionally roomier. I consider BA to be a better airline than Easy Jet.

Another thing to consider: If you depart from England less than 24 hours from the time you arrived, then you will be eligible for a refund of the LHR departure tax. This tax is surprisingly hefty. Save your ticket stubs for your return flights to prove this once you get home. If you normally just download the boarding pass to your phone, you might want to make an exception and print them out. You cannot apply for the refund until you get back to the US.

When I arrive into LHR in the afternoon and will be leaving in the morning, I stay at a hotel that is physically attached to the terminal that I will be leaving from. There is a Hilton at terminals 2 and 4, and a Sofitel at terminal 5. These are not hotels that you would choose as a destination, but for a quick overnight stay they are quite acceptable.

All United Airlines flights to the US leave from terminal 2, all British Airways flights to the US leave from terminal 5. Other airlines you will need to check before making hotel reservations.

Ralph

Ztx
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by Ztx » Sat Oct 19, 2019 2:06 pm

I've flown them twice - they are ok. I believe seats didn't recline but not 100% sure.

What I do remember for sure is that they watch carry on luggage like hawks. I was asked to measure and weigh it both times so make sure it's nor over the (relatively low) threshold.

Shallowpockets
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by Shallowpockets » Sat Oct 19, 2019 2:14 pm

Make sure you factor in the cost of food (and time) and maybe hotel during your flight travel. If you stay over in London, there are extra things to pay. Or any city where your flights are not bunched in a manner in which you travel more or less seamlessly.
No snes in saving that $400 if you have spend a night in London, one or both ways. Hotel, transport to hotel, food, time. All adds up.

jminv
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by jminv » Sat Oct 19, 2019 2:22 pm

They're fine. Since they're two tickets it is of course important to build in a safety time frame which you've done.

Topic Author
tj218
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by tj218 » Sat Oct 19, 2019 3:20 pm

Shallowpockets wrote:
Sat Oct 19, 2019 2:14 pm
Make sure you factor in the cost of food (and time) and maybe hotel during your flight travel. If you stay over in London, there are extra things to pay. Or any city where your flights are not bunched in a manner in which you travel more or less seamlessly.
No snes in saving that $400 if you have spend a night in London, one or both ways. Hotel, transport to hotel, food, time. All adds up.
Good thought, I did that but it definitely deserves repeating for anyone searching threads in the future. We decided we wouldn't mind spending the first couple days of our vacation in London with the kids, part to get over the time difference but also to get the kids to see some sites in London. Hotel/AirBnBs are more expensive in London than Vienna for sure though.

oxothuk
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by oxothuk » Sat Oct 19, 2019 6:31 pm

We took EasyJet last year for a trip to Cyprus, and had no issues. Like you, we spent a night at the airport in London both ways.

Flights were comfortable and on-time. We paid for extra legroom seats, which allowed us to bring another small bag onboard.

Make sure you pay close attention to their rules regarding max size for carry-on items. Easy-Jet and Ryanair are notorious for dinging infractions.

GAAP
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by GAAP » Sat Oct 19, 2019 7:02 pm

I've always had good experiences with EasyJet. One thing to note: they actually enforce their luggage size/weight and carry=on requirements -- make sure you're within the limits.
“Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.” ― Bruce Lee

SrGrumpy
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by SrGrumpy » Sat Oct 19, 2019 7:03 pm

oxothuk wrote:
Sat Oct 19, 2019 6:31 pm
We took EasyJet last year for a trip to Cyprus, and had no issues. Like you, we spent a night at the airport in London both ways.

Flights were comfortable and on-time. We paid for extra legroom seats, which allowed us to bring another small bag onboard.

Make sure you pay close attention to their rules regarding max size for carry-on items. Easy-Jet and Ryanair are notorious for dinging infractions.
Ha! We also went to Cyprus last year with EasyJet, out of John Lennon Liverpool and back to LGW, IIRC. Everything was on time and pleasant. We didn't pay extra for anything, though. As stated, be careful with baggage dimensions and weight - which pretty much applies to all airlines these days.

fasteddie911
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by fasteddie911 » Sun Oct 20, 2019 6:13 am

When we used Easyjet 5yrs ago, the airport we were flying out of didn't have an Easyjet ticketing area. We didn't print our boarding passes beforehand and didn't have smartphone so to get our tickets we had to search for Easyjet customer service, which we found in the basement and where folks go to check in their bags.

gd
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by gd » Sun Oct 20, 2019 7:31 am

Shallowpockets wrote:
Sat Oct 19, 2019 2:14 pm
Make sure you factor in the cost of food (and time) and maybe hotel during your flight travel. If you stay over in London, there are extra things to pay. Or any city where your flights are not bunched in a manner in which you travel more or less seamlessly.
No snes in saving that $400 if you have spend a night in London, one or both ways. Hotel, transport to hotel, food, time. All adds up.
And a day of your time, spent fussing with transit.

DonM17
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by DonM17 » Sun Oct 20, 2019 8:55 am

When it comes to carry on baggage they are real sticklers...when we flew from London to Barcelona last year....we each had a carry on bag but as we were approaching the check in area for the flight...we found out that they would have counted my wife's purse as her second carry on bag....so we would have had to pay the extra charge for her actual bag (fortunately we were able to stuff her purse into her actual carry on bag and managed to get through without getting hit with that charge.

sabhen
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by sabhen » Sun Oct 20, 2019 9:52 am

EasyJet is a good airline. They have a strict carry-on luggage policy as pointed out by some posters above. Once one of the flight attendants took a leave for health reasons. We had to wait a couple of hours to find a local substitute.

oxothuk
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by oxothuk » Sun Oct 20, 2019 1:02 pm

gd wrote:
Sun Oct 20, 2019 7:31 am
Shallowpockets wrote:
Sat Oct 19, 2019 2:14 pm
Make sure you factor in the cost of food (and time) and maybe hotel during your flight travel. If you stay over in London, there are extra things to pay. Or any city where your flights are not bunched in a manner in which you travel more or less seamlessly.
No snes in saving that $400 if you have spend a night in London, one or both ways. Hotel, transport to hotel, food, time. All adds up.
And a day of your time, spent fussing with transit.
Which may or may not be a negative. I like having a day to get over jet lag on the eastbound trip

Valuethinker
Posts: 39582
Joined: Fri May 11, 2007 11:07 am

Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by Valuethinker » Sun Oct 20, 2019 3:49 pm

tj218 wrote:
Sat Oct 19, 2019 11:59 am
I'm in the midst of planning a European vacation with my wife and kids for next summer. We want to go to Vienna but found flight prices were expensive for the 4 of us. I realized if you get to a European city it is much cheaper to then fly on (separate ticket) from that city to pretty much anywhere in Europe. We've already booked our round-trip flight to London where we plan to spend a few days before heading off to Vienna then ultimately heading back to London. It is less than half the cost by booking tickets this way vs. to Vienna on a single ticket.

US to Vienna on a round trip ticket was $3800+
vs.
US to London round trip $1300
London to Vienna round trip $400-1000 depending on airline)

To minimize delay/cancellations impacting our flight home I've built in a cushion of a day back in London before our flight home. EasyJet (Gatwick) AND Austrian Airlines (owned by Lufthansa) out of Heathrow, both offer multiple daily flights to Vienna, the EasyJet tickets are about $400 less (including nickel & diming for everything) than the Austrian Airlines tickets. My concern is will we be stuck in limbo like a Spirit or Frontier Airlines flight in the US after a delay/cancellation or is EasyJet much more reliable for departures?

Any experiences with either EasyJet or Austrian Airlines appreciated!
Gatwick is much further away than Heathrow but there are regular trains from London Bridge Kings Cross or Victoria. You are only really in trouble if theres a strike in which case you probably want to Uber it and it will be expensive (50 to 100 pounds I would guess). Its longer than an hour by car depending on traffic.

Be sure and allow lots of time at Gatwick. Queues can be long at security etc.

The luggage weight allowance is a hard limit. Theres no margin in it.

They can be delayed so don't have any connections that are too close in time.

You might want to buy sandwiches eg at pret a manger in Gatwick as they often run out of food on the plane.

Increasingly things don't accept cash only touch and pay cards. That might be the case with inflight food and drink. I hope your Anerican credit or debit card uses that technology or at least chip + pin?

niceguy7376
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by niceguy7376 » Sun Oct 20, 2019 7:10 pm

ralph124cf wrote:
Sat Oct 19, 2019 1:48 pm
Another thing to consider: If you depart from England less than 24 hours from the time you arrived, then you will be eligible for a refund of the LHR departure tax. This tax is surprisingly hefty. Save your ticket stubs for your return flights to prove this once you get home. You cannot apply for the refund until you get back to the US.
Heard of it for first time. We always fly to Asia with BA and a stop in London. Would that count for the refund?

Johnfmh
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by Johnfmh » Sun Oct 20, 2019 10:29 pm

Never flown EasyJet but have flown Austrian over 20 times RT from Washington DC to Vienna. It is definitely one of most expensive EU carriers but for me, the direct flight is worth some extra cash. One trick is to book about 3-4 weeks before the trip. Austrian is aware of the fact that Americans like to book months in advance, and charge accordingly. They also typically charge Europeans significantly less money for the same flights. Plug in VIE to IAD and then IAD to VIE to see the difference.

For inter-EU flights, most of the major carrier flights are quite cramped by American standard. Business class on some carriers would be domestic premium economy back home, and economy seats offer minimal legroom. The flip side of the coin is that most flights within the EU are less than 2 hours. I have flown Ryanair and don’t have a problem with it other than all the hidden extra fees. Generally, however, I fly national carriers within the EU because I have found that once you factor in the extras, the price is not much different plus I want the points.

alfaspider
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by alfaspider » Tue Oct 22, 2019 7:43 am

My understanding is that EasyJet is more like Frontier/Spirit than the mainline carriers. I haven't flown them, but I've seen out the door lines at the check in counters where mainline carriers have none. They can provide some very cheap fares, but you can't fudge the luggage size restrictions and you may encounter some very long check in lines.

ralph124cf
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by ralph124cf » Tue Oct 22, 2019 10:38 pm

niceguy7376 wrote:
Sun Oct 20, 2019 7:10 pm
ralph124cf wrote:
Sat Oct 19, 2019 1:48 pm
Another thing to consider: If you depart from England less than 24 hours from the time you arrived, then you will be eligible for a refund of the LHR departure tax. This tax is surprisingly hefty. Save your ticket stubs for your return flights to prove this once you get home. You cannot apply for the refund until you get back to the US.
Heard of it for first time. We always fly to Asia with BA and a stop in London. Would that count for the refund?

If you go thru UK immigration and spend the night at a hotel, and then continue to Asia, then yes.

If you are traveling from the US to LHR and then on to Asia on the same ticket then you would not be charged the tax in the first place, so nothing to refund.

Ralph

djheini
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by djheini » Tue Oct 22, 2019 10:50 pm

I've flown EasyJet for 2 round trips from London, and was satisfied overall. I would rank them somewhere between the US ultra-low-cost-carriers (e.g. Spirit/Frontier) and the more mainline US carriers. It's pretty no-frills on board, but it's also generally pretty short haul flights so shouldn't be much of an issue. Make sure to check in online as soon as it becomes available (30 days before the flight I think?) to be able to select better seats.

For carry-on baggage, they do have the one-bag-per-person rule but I didn't notice them measuring or weighing baggage on any of the legs other than just the number of bags (and they didn't say anything when my travelling companion had a backpack + separate shopping bag with art + duty free shopping in it)

For IRROPS, we were actually diverted on our trip earlier this month (Gatwick to Gibraltar, diverted to Malaga for a maintenance issue with eventual bus transportation to Gibraltar), with an ensuing 7 hour delay. That was annoying, but they handled the ensuing compensation claim very well - once we submitted the claim for the EU 261 compensation of over 1,000 GBP we had a confirmation email that our claim was approved in under an hour.

Valuethinker
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by Valuethinker » Wed Oct 23, 2019 3:43 am

snackdog wrote:
Sat Oct 19, 2019 12:40 pm
There used to be a reality show about UK airports. The EasyJet stories were always the most outrageous and the customers furious at their treatment. It was fun to watch!
That's only because they did not show Ryanair.

Ryanair really has horror stories.

Valuethinker
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Re: Any experiences (good/bad) with EasyJet for EU travel?

Post by Valuethinker » Wed Oct 23, 2019 3:52 am

Given the whole Heathrow-Gatwick issue I would tend to go with Austrian.

Getting to Gatwick can be a pain. Easyjet can have flight cancellations - I don't know that they are worse than the regular airlines, but it can happen.

They are the only airline to have lost my bag - I think in truth the plane was overloaded so they just left it at Gatwick (flight to Innsbruck).

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