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Germanwings

About this airline

Now owned by Lufthansa,Germanwings is an indisputable giant, one of Germany's big three budget airlines.  In addition to its German destinations, 'wings' flies to destinations in Turkey, Greece, Italy, Croatia and other Eastern locations.  It benefits from one of the best and most wide-ranging destination tallies among the airlines we profile. Unlike many carriers, Germanwings' route map is broad and well-distributed across Europe. An added bonus we love? With the airline's "Smart Connect" one-stop booking tool, it is possible to purchase connecting flights as single fares.


Upside

One of Europe's bigger low-cost airlines, with very good reach into the Balkans.  The website has a helpful low fare calendar in the upper right hand corner.  

Downside

Operates in part on a connecting flight model, feeding passengers via hubs.

Baggage

• Carry-on: Baggage cannot measure more than 55 x 40 x 20 centimeters and must weigh no more than 8 kg.
• Checked: Up to 20 kg of baggage (online €10 per piece is charged, at the airport €20 per piece.)

* Please visit Germanwings’s website for more information on its baggage policy.


Seating

Pre-booking is allowed online during or after the booking process until 3 hours before the flight.  Standard seats cost €8 and XL seats with extra legroom cost €15.  Before midnight the night before your flight, you can also reserve a “private seat” via the call center for the same price as your own seat.  This means that the seat next to you will be kept empty for a more comfortable trip.


Check-in and Ticketing

Web check-in is available between 72 and 3 hours before departure.  At a German airport you can check-in online up to 30 minutes before departure.  Passengers with checked luggage can also check- in online.


Tip

Germanwings hosts monthly offers, so check in often. Avoid early morning flights, which tend to be packed, out of their hubs. In general, allow extra time for check-in.

Germanwings has also recently started a program called Blind Booking. The premise is interesting: you pick your departure airport (from only four cities in Germany), and a vacation theme (Sun and Beach; Nature, Culture and Hiking; or Gay-friendly, for example). Germanwings then gives you a slate of destinations that fit the theme, with tickets available at bargain-basement prices. The catch is that the specific destination is picked for you by Germanwings, and not revealed until you complete your booking.

It’s not for everyone, but for improvisational travelers that love the idea of unplanned adventures, it can be quite a thrill. And if you really don’t like one or two of the offerings, don’t worry: you can pay five euros each to eliminate a destination.


Fun Fact

There have been many liveries for Germanwings in order to promote the destination city. There is a special livery to promote the City of Berlin (named "Berlin Bearbus"), and there have been special liveries for the German cities of Hamburg (named "Hamburg Shopper") and Stuttgart. There have also been liveries for T-Mobile and two others with a mouth with a tongue, one of them with a speech bubble across the aircraft.

Further reading

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