Hump Day Fare Hacks: December 14, 2017

Norwegian Index for December 14, 2017: 256.8

Although the $199 that JFK-ARN was going for didn’t last, the Norwegian Index still dropped by another 7.5 points to a new record low. And while this is largely due to the $217 found on JFK-OSL, it is also complemented by the $254 that BOS-OSL is going for. The $311 on BOS-CPH gives the Index a bit of normalcy, but – even so – it still dropped by 7.5 points. Even so, only four of 10 flights profiled this week were Norwegian flights, and all were under $500 round trip.

What does this mean? It means that transatlantic flight prices – across the board – appear to be going down, both legacy and low-cost carriers (LCCs). This isn’t news, of course, but it’s still exciting for all of those who are looking to travel across the pond.

Note: All routes profiled are based on a 7-day round trip (departing and arriving the same day a week apart), unless otherwise noted. That said, I strongly encourage you to play with a variety of dates and trip lengths and see what you can find.

BOSTON

Boston – Copenhagen

Leave on:

  • April (2017) 4, 25 (return April 13, 2017 and May 4, 2017)

Carrier: Norwegian Air Shuttle
Price: $311

Thoughts: Was up $1 last week over the week before, and now back $1. What goes up must come down (by the same amount)?

Boston – Lisbon

Leave on:

  • January (2017) 16, 22, 23, 29, 30
  • February (2017) 5, 6, 12, 13

Carrier: TAP Portugal
Price: $479

Thoughts: $1 off of last week, and with three more available dates. Can’t beat it!

Boston – Madrid

Leave on:

  • March (2017) 2 , 6, 16, 27, 29

Carrier: Iberia
Price: $381

Thoughts: This has held for a lot longer than I’d have anticipated.

Boston – Oslo

Leave on:

  • March 27, 2017 (return April 4, 2017)
  • April (2017) 3, 10, 24 (return April 11, 18, May 2)
  • May 1, 2017 (return May 9, 2017)

Carrier: Norwegian Air Shuttle
Price: $252

Thoughts: Has to be the lowest I’ve seen this route – even considering the $256 base fare I saw last spring.

Boston – Zurich

Leave on:

  • April (2017) 8-11, 18, 19, 23-27, 29
  • May (2017) 1-3

Carrier: Swiss Airlines
Price: $473

Thoughts: Up $26 from last week, but this is still exceptional.

NEW YORK

New York JFK – Berlin

Leave on:

  • January (2017) 11, 12, 16-19, 23-26, 30, 31
  • February (2017) 1, 2, 7-9, 13-15, 21, 23, 28
  • March 1, 2017

Carrier: airberlin
Price: $466

Thoughts: Can’t say I thought an airberlin flight would make it on Hump Day Fare Hacks, but the numbers don’t lie!

New York JFK – Dusseldorf

Leave on:

  • January (2017) 12, 16-19, 23-26, 30, 31
  • February (2017) 1, 2, 6-9, 14, 21
  • March 7, 2016

Carrier: airberlin
Price: $446

Thoughts: Make that two airberlin flights!

New York JFK – Lisbon

Leave on:

  • February (2017) 3, 6

Carrier: TAP Portugal
Price: $479

Thoughts: A pretty good pair of options, with other sub-$500 options to be found elsewhere in February.

New York JFK – Oslo

Leave on:

  • February 5, 2017

Carrier: Norwegian Air Shuttle
Price: $217

Thoughts: If it wasn’t for the $199 deal last week on JFK-ARN, this would be revered for plenty of time to come. Still, it deserves recognition in its own right.

New York JFK – Stockholm

Leave on:

  • January (2017) 20, 21, 23, 27, 28, 30
  • February (2017) 1, 4

Carrier: Norwegian Air Shuttle
Price: $245

Thoughts: I knew $199 was too good to last, but this is still exceptional.

Hump Day Fare Hacks: November 16, 2017

Norwegian Index for November 16, 2016: 289.0

After a brief hiatus last week (read the China trip report if you haven’t already!), Hump Day Fare Hacks is back.

A new low-water mark for the Norwegian Index is exceptional. All 10 fares – more than half of them from legacy carriers – under $500 round trip is an even more notable accomplishment.

Perhaps the most surprising was BOS-MAD for $382. This is a seasonal route, one that’s been known to be expensive, and usually cheap fares originate from routes with one or more of the following:

  1. Low-cost carriers
  2. A significant number of flights (supply)
  3. High competition between carriers

As basic economics would indicate, if demand outweighs supply, then the price goes up. However, if the inverse is true, then the price goes down. What’s peculiar about this example, though, is that none of these factors are true for BOS-MAD: Iberia is a legacy carrier, it flies once daily (at maximum), and it has no competition on the dates listed: Air Europa is slated to start flying on that route, but that won’t happen until June 2017.

This could well be a one-off, or perhaps Iberia is trying to increase customer loyalty in Boston in anticipation of more competition? Who knows. Either way, it’s an interesting development, and one I certainly didn’t expect.

Bottom line: With JFK-BCN and JFK-MAD similarly cheap, it seems that next spring is the time to visit Spain!

Note: All routes profiled are based on a 7-day round trip (departing and arriving the same day a week apart), unless otherwise noted. That said, I strongly encourage you to play with a variety of dates and trip lengths and see what you can find.

BOSTON

Boston – Copenhagen

Leave on:

  • April (2017) 4, 11, 25 (return April 13, 2017, April 20, 2017, and May 4, 2017)
  • May 2, 2017 (return May 11, 2017)

Carrier: Norwegian Air Shuttle
Price: $312

Thoughts: Down $5 from the last edition of Hump Day Fare Hacks.

Boston – Lisbon

Leave on:

  • March 6, 2017

Carrier: TAP Portugal
Price: $479

Thoughts: Too lazy to sift through the archives and check, but I believe this is the lowest this route has ever been.

Boston – London Heathrow

Leave on:

  • December 14, 15, 30, 31
  • January (2017) 7, 9-31
  • February (2017) 1, 2, 4-16, 19-28
  • March (2017) 1-24

Carrier: British Airways
Price: $464

Thoughts: Still way below $500 – far longer than I would have imagined.

Boston – Madrid

Leave on:

  • March (2017) 2, 5, 6, 9, 12, 13, 16, 19, 23, 30
  • April (2017) 3, 4, 6

Carrier: Iberia
Price: $382

Thoughts: Certainly unexpected, but all I’ll say is “we’ll see if it lasts.”

Boston – Oslo

Leave on:

  • March 27, 2017 (return April 4, 2017)
  • April 24, 2017 (return May 2, 2017)
  • May 22, 2017 (return May 30, 2017)

Carrier: Norwegian Air Shuttle
Price: $289

Thoughts: Like its BOS-CPH counterpart, Norwegian’s BOS-OSL route went down by $5 from two weeks ago.

NEW YORK

New York JFK – Barcelona

Leave on:

  • January (2017) 16, 22, 23, 28, 30
  • February (2017) 5, 20, 28
  • May 2, 2017

Carrier: Delta Air Lines
Price: $405

Thoughts: The first of two Spanish destinations from New York JFK this week, travelers can fly on Delta’s Boeing 767 or Airbus A330. Having flown on the former, I can vouch for its comfort.

New York JFK– Madrid

Leave on:

  • November 21-23, 29, 30
  • December 1, 6
  • March (2017) 15, 17-20, 22, 24-29

Carriers: Air Europa
Price: $462

Thoughts: Haven’t seen anything from Air Europa up to this point, but this is a very good price.

New York JFK – Moscow

Leave on:

  • January (2017) 23-27, 29-31
  • February (2017) 1-15, 17-28
  • March (2017) 1-9, 12-16, 20-30
  • April (2017) 11, 17

Carrier: Aeroflot
Price: $483

Thoughts: Aeroflot has been known to offer low fares, and this is no exception. A four-star airline, I believe the Russian flag carrier would offer a comfortable ride, although not sure how much people are looking to go to Russia in the winter, so perhaps the April dates are optimal.

New York JFK – Oslo

Leave on:

  • January 17, 2017

Carrier: Norwegian Air Shuttle
Price: $277

Thoughts: $5 down, and the low-water mark for Norwegian flights this week.

New York JFK – Stockholm

Leave on:

  • December 7
  • January (2017) 16, 20, 25, 27
  • February (2017) 1, 6, 8
  • March (2017) 6, 13, 26
  • May (2017) 5, 7

Carrier: Norwegian Air Shuttle
Price: $278

Thoughts: $4 down from the last edition. Curious to see whether this this holds around the $280 mark, or drops even more.

Hump Day Fare Hacks: October 12, 2016

Norwegian Index for October 12, 2016: 300.0

The Norwegian Index fell 6.8 points from last week, which is quite surprising given that 25% of the calculation is derived from BOS-OSL, whose last remaining departure dates of the season are extremely close (and, thus, are more expensive). However, with Norwegian scheduled to restart BOS-CPH and BOS-OSL services again next spring after a successful first year, I’m curious to see what kind of prices will be offered for those routes.

British Airways lowered the price on its BOS-LHR route to $503, which is barely believable as – in the past year – BOS-LHR has hovered anywhere between $800 and $1,000. Though I’m sure that low fuel prices have something to do with it, I would also imagine that the pound falling 18% against the dollar since Britain’s vote to leave the European Union probably has something to do with it. I had expected flights to LHR to cheapen following Brexit, and while prices stayed consistently high for a month or two, it seems that they are falling now. Perhaps the effects of Brexit on airfares took longer to set in than we thought. I can’t say I agree with Britain’s decision, but I’m certainly not complaining as an American traveler!

Even so, I think there was something even more noteworthy that happened  this week: American Airlines’ willingness to sell JFK-CDG for $433 round trip. Of course, Norwegian Air Shuttle has sold flights on that route for less than $400, but the fact that a legacy carrier is putting forth such a price on a traditionally expensive and competitive route is unbelievable. Again, I think it’s still too early to tell if this is an aberration or the start of a new trend, but maybe the collateral impacts of Brexit have been more than anticipated.

Note: All routes profiled are based on a 7-day round trip (departing and arriving the same day a week apart), unless otherwise noted. That said, I strongly encourage you to play with a variety of dates and trip lengths and see what you can find.

BOSTON

Boston – Lisbon

Leave on:

  • January 26, 2017
  • February 2, 2017
  • March 16, 2017

Carrier: TAP Portugal
Price: $576

Thoughts: While only available on a narrow range of dates, this is the lowest that I’ve seen TAP’s BOS-LIS flights go for.

Boston – London Gatwick

Leave on:

  • December 4
  • January (2017) 15, 16, 18, 20, 22, 23, 25, 27, 29, 30
  • February (2017) 1, 5, 6, 8, 10, 12, 13, 20, 22, 26, 27
  • March (2017) 1, 6, 20, 22

Carrier: Norwegian Air Shuttle
Price: $324

Thoughts: Even with the lowering of fares on British Airways’ BOS-LHR route, Norwegian is still going to fight for the Boston to London marketshare. And while Norwegian and its BOS-LGW route – in all likelihood – won’t have the same demand or resources as its BOS-LHR counterparts, it’ll certainly attract people with its low fares.

Boston – London Heathrow

Leave on:

  • November 9-16, 21-26, 28-30
  • December 1-9, 12, 13, 18, 19, 27, 31
  • January (2017) 1, 2, 5-31
  • February (2017) 1, 2, 6-28
  • March (2017) 1-24

Carrier: British Airways
Price: $503

Thoughts: Could it break the $500 mark? I personally would bet against it, as I could never have fathomed BOS-LHR flights going that low, but I hope I’m wrong!

Boston – Munich

Leave on:

  • January (2017) 11-31
  • February (2017) 1, 2, 4-15, 21-24, 26-28
  • March (2017) 1-3, 6-9, 13-18, 24, 25, 31

Carrier: Lufthansa
Price: $490

Thoughts: Good deal? Absolutely. New normal? Probably not.

Boston – Oslo

Leave on: October 21 (return October 29)

Carrier: Norwegian Air Shuttle
Price: $321

Thoughts: This is a great use of your money (if you’ve got nothing to do for a week starting next Friday).

NEW YORK

New York JFK and Newark – Amsterdam

Leave on:

  • January (2017) 11-31
  • Any date in February
  • Any date in March

Carriers: Delta Air Lines (JFK), KLM (JFK), United Airlines (EWR)
Price: $439

Thoughts: Now the entire month of March is available for $439. Still don’t get it.

New York JFK – London Heathrow

Leave on:

  • April (2017) 1-12, 14, 15, 17-30
  • May (2017) 1-10

Carriers: Delta Air Lines, Virgin Atlantic Airways
Price: $519

Thoughts: No big deal – DL and VS just went ahead and took $73 off of last week’s fare.

New York JFK – Oslo

Leave on:

  • February (2017) 5, 7

Carrier: Norwegian Air Shuttle
Price: $281

Thoughts: It’s a small range of dates, and it might not be the preferable time of year given the destination, but it’s also cheaper than you’d probably find a flight to the West Coast for.

New York JFK – Paris

Leave on:

  • January (2017) 11-28, 30, 31
  • February (2017) 1-3, 5-17, 20-28
  • March (2017) 5, 6, 8, 9, 14-16, 22, 29

Carrier: American Airlines
Price: $433

Thoughts: Norwegian has put forth some impressive prices on JFK-CDG, but the fact that American is selling a direct transatlantic flight for $433 round trip is insane. Maybe the increased level of competition is finally starting to show?

New York JFK – Stockholm

Leave on:

  • February (2017) 1, 3, 6, 8

Carrier: Norwegian Air Shuttle
Price: $274

Thoughts: The statement immediately preceding this one applies here as well.