In 2017 I have flown both Norwegian and WOW Air multiple times to and from Europe on one-way tickets to and from California. I have a definite preference for Norwegian Airlines.
The primary advantage of WOW is Keflavik Airport in Iceland is a cool place to visit. Also, WOW flies out of SFO and I prefer the drive to SFO rather than Oakland for Norwegian flights due to freeway traffic patterns from Monterey. For LAX flyers that is not an issue since both airlines operate from LAX.
Reason 1: Norwegian allows more free carry-on bags than WOW Air.
Norwegian’s hand baggage carry-on policy allows one full-size carry-on bag and one underseat bag. The primary restriction is the combined weight is limited to 10kg/22 lb.
LowFare, Lowfare+, Premium
- 1 carry-on bag: max. 55x40x23 cm
- 1 small personal item: max. 25x33x20 cm
- Max. combined weight: 10 kg
WOW Air carry-on bag rules limit the flyer to one small personal bag for free and carry-on bag is an additional fee.
Each guest is permitted 2 items in the cabin. 1 personal item (free) and 1 carry-on bag (paid).
This is a policy change from when I flew WOW Air at the beginning of 2017 and I could take two bags,
1 PERSONAL ITEM
Included in the WOW airfare is one small personal item up to a maximum of 42x32x25cm/ 17x13x10in (10kg/22 lbs) including handles and wheels, such as a small bag/backpack, laptop or a camera bag. The item must fit under the seat in front of you.
WOW Air carry-on bag fee is $39.99 each way for SFO to Berlin.
Reason 2: Norwegian Dreamliner 787-9 has good inflight entertainment system with loads of films.
WOW Air flights do not have an inflight entertainment system on their aircraft.
Hey, isn’t there any entertainment on board?
Bring your own!
There is no organized entertainment program on board our aircraft, only the thrill of sitting high up in the sky and enjoying the flight. We recommend that our guests bring something fun along with them, especially when travelling with children.
We’ve got the power! There’s a universal plug under every seat on our A321 and A330 aircraft so you can easily recharge your devices (mobile phone, tablet etc.) while in the air.
My strategy for dealing with long haul flights of 10 and 11 hours in economy class is binge watch movies. I generally watch four movies and doze off for 2 or 3 hours during the flight.
The Heavy Water War is a six-part 4.5 hour film on why Norway was integral to the Nazi war effort and the fight to destroy the Nazi heavy water production program.
I enjoy watching Norwegian and Scandinavian movies. I have seen several great productions on Norwegian flights that I would have unlikely seen otherwise.
Reason 3: Norwegian offers true one-way ticket pricing for USA to Europe and Europe to USA.
WOW Air offers some great one-way fares to Europe, but the fare is generally quite a bit higher to fly back to the USA from Europe. I see far less pricing difference with Norwegian in each direction.
In 2017 WOW Air has increasingly restricted their lowest one-way ticket prices to apply only when purchasing a round trip WOW Airlines ticket.
Loyalty Traveler – WOW Air lowest one-way fares only for round trip tickets.
I fly Norwegian and WOW Air primarily when I want to get to Europe for a low cost round trip ticket from Europe to California with a major alliance airline like SAS, United, American and British Airways.
When I have a break in my Europe originated round trip tickets, for example Stockholm – San Jose SJC – Stockholm, then I need a one-way ticket back to California.
Norwegian is my go to airline for one-way tickets back to Oakland, California.