This is my experience with WowAir, this isn’t sponsored, or sugar coated. This is a 100% honest review after my first flight with the youngest airline. I understand that all experiences are different, so please take what I say with a grain of salt as I am just one person. Now, let me begin:
When I was given the opportunity to be in Spain for summer, I started to search for the cheapest possible flights to Spain. Recently WowAir made Cleveland a base for direct flights for Iceland. I found a flight to Reykjavik for $100 (plus a carry-on for $45). The next morning from the KEF airport was a flight to Madrid for $125 (including checked bag). So $270 later I had my flights booked.
Security in Cleveland is nothing special compared to other airports so once I made it through the TSA security, I found my way to the gate and then spoke to the attendant. He asked me to put my carry on and personal item into the compartment boxes next to the gate. They fit thankfully, and soon after the attendant starting calling out information so boarding could begin. By the time boarding began, we were scheduled to be taking off, so I became aware that our flight would be delayed, I just didn’t expect for us to be stuck on the tarmac for 4 hours after I boarded.
It took the flight attendants and captain an hour before we were told about the issue with taking off. At that point, I hadn’t had anything to drink, and moments later they came around with water for us. As WowAir is a budget airline, this is something we otherwise would’ve had to pay for and as the plane was abnormally warm the others in my row gladly drank up. As the plane restrooms were located at the front and rear of the plane I didn’t want to drink anything. I was hopeful that we would resolve all issues and begin takeoff! As a lover of window seats, I try my best not to get up during flight so those next to me aren’t inconvenienced.
The reasoning for my delay as said by the pilot is that we have too much weight, not enough runway, and without a longer runway we can’t take off. This is the first time in my life I’ve heard this, but it is also the first time in a while that I’ve left during a 95-degree humid day. Our plane is packed, no seat is empty, so you can imagine the frustration in a delay over something we can’t comprehend.
It is around the second hour that we are told about our two options:
Option 1: All checked bags are taken off the flight so we can take off
Option 2: Cancel tonight’s flight and reschedule for tomorrow or a later date
I found myself starting to laugh at both options but was happy in that moment for my carry-on lifestyle. The passengers with checked bags were told that bags would be on the next flight to Reykjavik, and when they asked if their bags would be delivered to their destination all the flight attendant said was “They’ll make it to Iceland, but I don’t know if they’ll be sent to your final destination”. I know the airline is new, they’ve only been around since 2011 and only recently started flights out of Cleveland but this is horrible for those who are only just connecting through Iceland due to the cheap flight. At this time they started to come around and give us chocolate.
After this news was spread around people began to ask to get off and to be put on a different flight. It took another hour for bags to be taken off along with their owners. The airline asked for one passenger (with a carry on) to be put on the next flight, which was two days later. With a flight the next day in Iceland to Madrid I stayed in my seat and waited another hour for take off to commence.
I’m sure this isn’t a normal occurrence with WowAir, but I wanted to share my experience because in my 15 years of flying I’ve never been told all checked baggage must be removed. This will affect my future flights with WowAir as I feel the process of boarding was poorly thought out, and throughout the delay, we should’ve been given more information.
I hope you enjoyed my review of Wow Airlines and if you want more content like this please make sure to follow, like, and comment! I appreciate hearing from all of you as I continue onto other travel destinations.