Low-cost vs full-cost: Are cheap flights really worth it?

Jun 18, 2019
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Jetstar is well-known for offering ridiculously cheap flights. Source: Getty

Flights can be expensive and we all love a good bargain, but are cheap flights really a win when you add on all the extras?

Points Hacks, one of Australia’s biggest communities of airline reward enthusiasts, has done the research to deliver the answer.

The platform compared the total cost of flying one-way from Sydney to Brisbane with Qantas, Virgin Australia, Jetstar and Tigerair.

It turns out, low-cost flights really are worth it (if extra leg room, baggage and in-flight entertainment are the least of your worries), as the platform found low-cost carriers Jetstar ($137) and Tigerair ($104.95) worked out to be cheaper even with the add-ons.

Meanwhile, the most expensive fare goes to Qantas, which charges $185 for a ticket, followed by Virgin Australia ($165).

Point Hacks’ spokesperson, Daniel Sciberras, said “deciding whether to go with a full-cost or low-cost comes down to personal preference”. 

“When basing it on price, Jetstar and Tigerair work out to be cheaper even with the add-ons, however Qantas and Virgin Australia are known for their superior service and provide in-flight entertainment on most flights,” he said. 

“Full-cost carriers also give you peace of mind, especially when travelling with check baggage, as low-cost carriers can charge a hefty cost when you need to add on extras at the airport. Jetstar and Tigerair’s ‘no frills’ flights deliver good value for money to more price-conscious travellers, with their fares costing only half of what the full-service carriers charge.”

What do you think? Which airline do you prefer?

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