International Airlines Group has revealed what it’s new long haul low-cost carrier service is going to be called. Welcome to LEVEL.
So a new low-cost carrier to do IAG’s bidding then. LEVEL‘s home base as expected will be Barcelona El Prat. It will operate the following routes in the first instance:
- Los Angeles – 1st June
- Oakland International Airport for San Francisco – 2nd June
- Punta Cana – 10th June
- Buenos Aires – 17th June
Initially, two planes will be in the LEVEL fleet – and both Airbus A330-200s. These new planes will be crewed with Iberia crews. They will be configured in a two class configuration – premium economy and economy
- Premium Economy will be in 2-3-2 configuration, with 21 seats installed
- Economy Class will be in a 2-4-2 configuration, with 293 seats installed
So what to expect in Economy Class? Well, it’s going to be tight with a 30″ seat pitch (although the 18″ seat width has been preserved). A 9″ IFE screen will be at each seat.
Of course, there will be plenty of things to buy up – such as baggage, extra leg room seats and hot meals.
On board, food, duty-free, comfort packs (pillow/blanket/amenity kits) will be available.
In addition, IAG states there will be “super-fast on-board wi-fi with prices from €8.99″ installed. Hopefully, this will be Gogo 2KU. No supplier has been identified in the releases
Premium Economy is going to be a bit roomier with a 37″ seat pitch, food and snacks included and a 12” IFE screen with noise cancelling headphones
Of course, to confuse things, there’ll be multiple levels of what will be sold. Get ready for the confusing chart with six different fare types:
Interestingly, LEVEL will be integrated into the IAG Groups Avios rewards programme – allowing you to earn and redeem Avios on LEVEL flights.
What will the lead in fares be like? Aggressive, with initial fares starting from €99 in Economy class and €599 in Premium Economy
ECONOMY PREMIUM ECONOMY Barcelona- Los Angeles From €99 From €599 Barcelona - Oakland From €99 From €99 Barcelona-Punta Cana From €149 From €99 Barcelona-Buenos Aires Fram €149 From €99
You can book these at flylevel.com shortly (it seems the site isn’t ready, even though the PR’s are out).
So – is IAG’s answer to Norwegian’s transatlantic service? It seems so. This is a low-cost operation (even though it’s using Iberia crew – which will bump up the costs of operating the airline). The four routes are going to pull in the passengers – no question about that. However, those lead in fares won’t last for long.
It’ll be interesting to see how fares pan out regularly after the promotional pricing is over, and how they compare against the full fat service.
Let’s see how IAG flies with LEVEL, and how other carriers respond. Certainly, I doubt Norwegian will be sitting on its hands doing nothing.
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