Budget carriers are increasingly seeking to challenge the domination of U.S. legacy carriers in the transatlantic market. European no-frills ultra-low cost carrier WOW Air is set to launch four new routes in the United States next spring. The move is being seen as rather unwelcome by leading U.S. carriers such as United Continental, Delta Air Lines and American Airlines, which fear that the competition posed by WOW Air is going to eat into their profit margins.
Media reports said that a number of budget carriers are aggressively eyeing the transatlantic market and visibly creating a pressure on pricing with low airfares. WOW Air is yet another new entrant. And, the transatlantic foray of budget carriers has just started with more to come in future.
According to the reports, WOW Air has already announced that it will be further expand its transatlantic operations with the launch of four new routes in the United States in 2018. All the new destinations will be in the Midwest, including Cincinnati, Cleveland, St. Louis and Detroit. It may be noted that Delta Air Lines already has its major hub in Detroit, while the other three destinations have no or little transatlantic service.
The competition has become tough for the U.S. legacy carriers with cheap introductory fares announced by WOW Air for conveniently connecting to European cities. Travel experts said that apart from competitive pricing, WOW Air is also going to prove to be quite perfect for midsize cities in the eastern half of the United States. Another advantage for WOW Air will be that it will find cost effective to undertake transatlantic operations as it will be deploying narrow body aircrafts on these new routes, while the legacy carriers use wide body aircrafts, which proves to be a costly affair. Until now most of these Midwest cities had few flights to European destinations, and the travelers were required to connect through some hub come what may.