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BA best airline but outranked in value for money
May 5th, 2014 by elisa

Good news for British Airways, which has been ranked best airline in almost every category except value by a Skyscanner survey.

BA came first for its food and drink, onboard experience, its style and customer service in short-haul flights, but ranked third in ‘best value for money’. It was beaten by Easyjet in second place, and little-known airline, Norwegian, in first place.

Norwegian was a surprise contender and fared extremely well in the survey, biting at BA’s heels in second place for most of the categories.

Skyscanner’s Mary Porter said: “Being a Superbrand and one which Brits are very proud of, it’s perhaps not surprising that British Airways has scooped the top spot in our survey.

“However it is particularly interesting to see such strong results for a far less well-known airline, with Norwegian taking second place and goes to show that low cost does not necessarily mean an inferior product or service.”

The survey was of 4,000 British travellers, surveyed on their opinion of airlines’ short-haul flights from the UK.

Easyjet passengers allowed to use gadgets on flights
Apr 16th, 2014 by elisa

Easyjet passengers are now allowed to use personal electronic devices throughout their whole flight, including during take-off and landing.

Gadgets such as laptops, tablets and mobiles must be placed in ‘flight mode’ and mobiles cannot be used to make or receive calls or texts.

The move follows recent recommendations from the European Aviation Safety Agency, which have allowed for restrictions on the use of gadgets onboard aircraft to be relaxed.

Peter Duffy, Easyjet’s group commercial director, customer, product and marketing said: “We know that portable devices are an important part of our customers’ journey with us so we are pleased they can now use their electronic devices onboard in ‘Flight mode’ for the duration of their flight with us – we think this will be a popular change.”

Ryanair and Easyjet fined over travel insurance
Feb 20th, 2014 by elisa

Ryanair and Easyjet have been fined by Italy‘s antitrust watchdog for misleading customers over travel insurance.

The watchdog, AGCM, said the airlines had not given sufficient information for customers to make an informed choice when buying travel insurance. It said that the websites weren’t clear enough when it came to explaining what risks were covered, and that the cost of requesting a refund was higher than the insurance itself, with excess fees disproportionately high.

In Ryanair’s case, the watchdog said that the option to refuse the insurance was too difficult to find on the website, with the tick box located on a countries drop-down menu between the Netherlands and Norway.

Ryanair was fined €850,000, which it says it will appeal. However, it will amend its website. 

Ryanair’s Robin Kiely said: “We note this ruling and while we disagree with its findings and have instructed our lawyers to appeal, we will be amending our website accordingly.”

Easyjet was fined €200,000 because it had already made amendments to its website.

An Easyjet spokeswoman said: “Easyjet is disappointed by AGCM’s decision to fine the airline for the way it sold its travel insurance product in Italy. All of the issues raised in the decision have already been remedied in consultation with the AGCM and our insurance partner Allianz. Easyjet will examine the decision and review its options.”

Easyjet winning battle of low-cost airlines
Jan 8th, 2014 by elisa

Easyjet picture by Flickr user Aero Icarus

Easyjet picture by Flickr user Aero Icarus

In the battle of low-cost airlines, Easyjet is winning, according to its latest passenger numbers.

Last year, Easyjet’s passengers numbers rose 3.6%, growing at a faster rate than Ryanair’s.

Easyjet saw its numbers rise from 59.2 million in 2012, to 61.3 million in 2013. In comparison, Ryanair saw its numbers rise by 2.3% last year, to 81.4 million.

Easyjet’s passenger load factor also beat its rival in 2013 with 89.3% compared to Ryanair’s 81%.

 

Easyjet’s new Italian base
Oct 14th, 2013 by elisa

Easyjet is to open a base in Naples in spring 2014.

The airline will operate 20 routes with the two aircraft based in Naples. It will fly additional frequencies on key routes such as London Gatwick with two daily flights.

For a truly peaceful holiday, why not try one of these villas in the village of Pietrafitta nestled in the secluded Val di Comino, deep in the countryside between Rome and Naples, but only 1.5 hours drive away to either airport.

Each villa (two or three bed) stands in about an acre of ground with open views all round. The kitchens have a breathtaking view of the mountains and their balconies are the perfect spot to take breakfast. Find out more here.

Villa Anna

Villa Anna

 

New Easyjet base in Hamburg
Sep 26th, 2013 by elisa

Easyjet is expanding with a base in Hamburg next spring. It will also add the eighth aircraft to its fleet in Berlin.

The airline’s 23rd base in its European network will open with three A319 aircraft, offering an additional 15 routes from Hamburg, from where it already flies to six destinations.

Chief executive Carolyn McCall said: “I am really pleased to be able to announce the launch of a new base in Hamburg which will enable us to double the size of our operation. Hamburg and its region is one of the most dynamic economies in Europe with a significant and growing tourist industry.

She added: “These expansion plans mean that we expect to carry twice as many passengers in the first year of operations which will take us to more than a million passengers annually for the first time.”

Easyjet expects to bring an additional 275,000 visitors in Hamburg in the first year. The airline also expects to carry an additional 130,000 passengers to and from Berlin, topping the 4 million it carried over the last year.

 

 

Pilot paid passengers to leave aircraft
Sep 17th, 2013 by elisa

It sounds unlikely, but an Easyjet pilot actually offered passengers cash to give up their seats on his flight.

He did so because he realised that the plane scheduled to fly from Gatwick to Bari in Italy was too heavy to get off the ground.

In order to lighten the load, he initially offered €250 per passenger, plus an overnight hotel, but no one took the offer. It was only until he upped the price to €400 each that four passengers voluntarily left the aircraft, reported the Daily Mail.

According to the paper, Flight EZY8365 from Gatwick to Bari was delayed on the tarmac for 50 minutes as the pilot negotiated with passengers. One passenger told reporters that the pilot had said unless there were volunteers, the last four passengers to check in would have to leave. When four passengers did eventually volunteer, there were cheers across the cabin.

The airline denies bartering took place over the amount passengers were paid, and that the reason he initially offered €250 was because he had been given the wrong information.

An Easyjet spokesperson said: “Volunteers are paid according to EU regulations which is based on the distance of the flight.

“Unfortunately the pilot was given incorrect information initially and so later corrected the amount the passengers were entitled to. No bartering took place.”

EU regulations state that passengers who are denied boarding are entitled to €400 for flights over 1,500kms.

 

Easyjet and UNICEF ‘Change for Good’ campaign raises over £1.4 million
Jul 18th, 2013 by elisa

A spare £2.3 billion in foreign currency is being held by holidaymakers and business travellers after their trips. This averages at £46.98 in holiday currency per Brit according to research by YouGov for Easyjet.

Easyjet, in partnership with the United Nations children’s charity, UNICEF, launched the ‘Change for Good’ campaign last year. The airline collected spare foreign currency from Easyjet passengers to go to the charity, raising £1.4 millon to date to go towards vaccinating children and mothers against life-threatening diseases in countries across West and Central Africa.

The airline relaunched its collection scheme on Monday (15th July) with the aim to collect even more to help UNICEF’s valuable work. 

David Bull, executive director of UNICEF UK, said: “Rather than letting that loose foreign change go to waste in a sock drawer, we are urging people heading home from their holidays to make their spare currency go further by donating it to Unicef.”

‘Change for Good’ is UNICEF’s global initiative run in partnership with leading airlines across the world. The airline partners include: American Airlines, Qantas and Cathay Pacific as well as easyJet in the UK. In total, ‘Change for Good’ globally has raised over £53 million for UNICEF’s work with children.

You can donate to the cabin crew on the aircraft after your journey, or online.

 

New winter routes for Easyjet and Ryanair
Jul 10th, 2013 by elisa

Easyjet and Ryanair have announced their additional new winter routes for this year.

Easyjet will fly four times a week from Gatwick to Bucharest from 17th October, twice a week from Liverpool John Lennon Airport to Larnaca from 2nd November, and add a twice weekly winter sun route to Tenerife from Newcastle from 6th November.

In addition, Easyjet will also operate a new route from Manchester Airport to Lyon from 14th December. It will also operate London Luton Airport to Venice just in time for Valentine’s day from 13th February 2014.

Ryanair’s Manchester winter schedule includes four new routes to Krakow, Lanzarote, Paphos and Palma.

Krakow flights will operate three times a week and the other destinations will be served twice weekly.

There are 22 Ryanair routes in total, on sale now and starting in October.

Villaseek has many villas to choose from in these destinations, so take advantage of the new routes while they are on and find a bargain winter holiday.

Easyjet test ash-cloud technology
May 9th, 2013 by elisa

Easyjet is preparing for the final stages of testing its ash-detection technology, known as AVOID.

It has flown a tonne of volcanic ash from Iceland to then transport to an Airbus base in France later this summer. Together with its partners, Airbus and Nicarnica, the airline plans to carry out a major experiment to put the technology to the ultimate test.

An Airbus test plane will disperse the ash into the atmosphere at an unconfirmed location during the month of August. A second Airbus test aircraft, fitted with AVOID technology, will detect and avoid the artificial ash cloud at over 30,000ft.

The experiment will be timed to coincide with the alignment of the Seviri and Calypso satellites, so they can image the ash cloud from space. This will hopefully prove the accuracy and effectiveness of the technology, which uses infrared technology developed by the US military, to supply images to pilots and an airline’s operations control centre.

“The threat from Icelandic volcanoes continues and so finalising the approval of the AVOID technology is as crucial now as ever to ensure we never again see the scenes of spring 2010 when all flying ceased for several days,” said Ian Davies, Easyjet’s engineering director.

The images captured by AVOID will enable pilots to see an ash cloud up to 100km ahead of the aircraft at altitudes between 5,000ft and 50,000ft, and avoid it where possible.

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