5 Reasons to Fly Norwegian

A Norwegian 787 Dreamliner (Photo: Boeing)

Award-winning and disruptive, Norwegian (operating as Norwegian Air Shuttle, Norwegian Long Haul, and Norwegian Air International) has been raising eyebrows in recent years with regulation hurdles and at times controversial business practices. Through it all, however, the past two years have seen numerous awards and increased profitability for the airline. After a few trips on Norwegian Air Shuttle, it’s not hard to see myself why. Here are five reasons, from a passenger’s perspective, you should consider flying Norwegian on your next trip to Europe.

1. Oslo

As Oslo’s largest airport, Oslo Gardermoen (OSL) also serves as Norwegian’s headquarters and main point of transfer for most passengers. Designed with a unique Nordic style, the airport is pleasant, spacious, and usually quiet, although finding seating can prove to be a bit difficult during peak times. For longer layovers, a high-speed train takes passengers on a short 30-minute journey straight into the heart of Oslo featuring numerous restaurants, hotels, and sights to see. The airport provides free WiFi and numerous charging points throughout the terminal. Busses and well-placed signage make transferring through this airport relatively easy, especially compared to larger hubs such as London Heathrow or Frankfurt.

2. Free WiFi (and entertainment)

While flying on Norwegian’s 737-800s, passengers can enjoy free WiFi after 10,000 feet. The WiFi, provided by GEE’s Ku-band service, isn’t fast enough to accommodate video streaming or even large webpages at times, but is certainly adequate to text, check email, and browse the news. Overseas flights on the 787-8 don’t have WiFi yet, as the newer 787-9s will be the first to be retrofitted with connectivity, but they do feature Panasonic’s Android-based AVOD with a wide selection of free entertainment, a USB and traditional outlet, and a snack bar option. Even without WiFi, I found plenty to do while crossing the Atlantic.

3. New Airplanes

Norwegian has an all-Boeing fleet of 737-800s, 787-8s, and 787-9s. Admittedly, some of the seats even on the 787s are starting to show signs of wear, but it doesn’t reduce the pleasure of flying the new airplanes. After a few transatlantic crossings, whether it be the science or the psychology, I can definitively say the 787 leaves me feeling much better after a flight. The mood lighting is excellent, and Norwegian has programed a special rainbow mood light show for landing. Even on the 737s, which feature the Boeing Sky Interior, feel more spacious than others.

4. Extensive Network

For almost any trip to Europe, Norwegian offers a way to get there. As a lower-cost carrier, that sometimes means you’ll be landing outside your destination city, but it’s hard to discount Norwegian’s network offering through its hub in Oslo. Norwegian even offers service to some destinations like Warsaw that were previously harder to access from the US on a smaller budget. Norwegian keeps expanding too, with new flights to Paris-Orly just launched and more on the way.

5. Low Cost

At its core, Norwegian today is a disruptive business in the style of Wizz Air and WOW air. Norwegian offers a competitive product at an even more competitive price, and manages to include a number of amenities and even a frequent flyer program. While some of Norwegian’s other business practices may discourage travelers from taking them, from a purely passenger experience perspective, Norwegian has been a pleasure to fly.

AirlineGeeks.com Staff

AirlineGeeks.com Staff

AirlineGeeks.com began in February, 2013 as a one-man (er… teenager, rather) show. Since then, we’ve grown to have 20 active team members, and yes, we’re still growing. Some of us are looking to work in the aviation industry as professionals when we grow older. Some of us are still trying to decide what we want to do. That’s okay though, because we’re all here for the same reason: we love the airlines. We’re the youngest team of airline industry journalists out there.
AirlineGeeks.com Staff
  • gizmo

    As I am writing this, I am back in a hotel room in Stockholm after my Norwegian Flight DY 7087 is delayed by at least six hours. You wouldn’t know this from looking on Norwegian’s website, which has the flight leaving in 10 minutes. So me and my three kids showed up at the airport this morning at 8 am for our flight, seeing that it wasn’t listed as delayed, only to see on the airport screen the “new dparture” of 3:30 pm. Compensation? Vouchers? Norwegian Staff? Good luck fining any of them, Norwegian instead has know-nothing contractors from Aviator running things at the airport. They were just as flummoxed as us that the flight was so late, that no-one was informed on their phones or e-mails, that the flight was still listed as “on time” on Norwegian’s website, and that no direct reps from Norwegian were available at their second largest hub.

    SAS is competing with Norwegian, and is offering the same one-way prices to LAX, unfortunately their direct to LAX flight, which was scheduled to leave five minutes after ours, was full. Not that Norwegian’s Aviator contractors at the airport were able to reschedule us on that flight….just I would gladly have paid the extra $500 for an on-spot ticket.

    Never flying this ridiculous excuse for an airline again.