Welcome to post number 2 in my Flying With: series. This time I have a wonderful guest post written by the wonderful Vanessa Dias from the www.thewellbeingblogger.com
You can check her out on twitter here @theWblogger
Vanessa is a former psychologist who blogs all about well-being and she offers online coaching courses to be able to assist people on their personal journey’s towards happiness. Go check her out!
Vanessa has kindly shared with me a comprehensive blog detailing her personal experiences and what to expect when flying with EasyJet. You can check out post 1 in this series, Flying With: Ryanair here.
Flying With: EasyJet
Since I moved abroad and throughout the years I lived in England, EasyJet has been my go-to airline and I never really thought of flying with another company. EasyJet does meet my needs as a solo and light traveller. Although I have been a loyal EasyJet costumer, this doesn’t mean that everything is great about flying with EasyJet and this post is meant to share with you the good, the bad, and the ugly of it based on my experience as a long-time customer. Ready to come on board? Let’s go then!
Background Information: EasyJet
EasyJet’s first inaugural flights happened in November 1995, allowing people to travel more affordably from London Luton airport to Glasgow and Edinburgh. Back then, EasyJet’s promise was already to make “flying as affordable as a pair of jeans”. Today, EasyJet makes itself present in 156 airports,distributed among 33 countries, with 979 routes to choose from.
Their “Orange Spirit”, as they call it, denotes an organisational culture that primes for making a positive social impact through their partnership with UNICEF, for supporting the environment by focusing on fuel usage reduction, investing in a diverse workforce by creating more opportunities for female new entrant pilots as well as promoting innovation and accessibility. This “spirit” also seems to mirror EasyJet’s corporative values of safety, simplicity, teamwork, integrity, passion, and pioneering. Overall, I would say they are doing a great job in matters of matching their words with their actions and that’s something I really value when choosing any kind of company.
My Personal Journey with EasyJet
My first flying experience with EasyJet goes back to September 2015. That was the first of many journeys between Lisbon and Gatwick’s airports as an expat. The number one reason why I decided to fly with EasyJet was, without a single ounce of shame, their price. At times, you can get one-way flights as cheap as £26. The second reason why I opted to keep loyal to EasyJet was the fact that Gatwick’s airport was the closest international airport to where I was living back then.
Hence, I can surely say that price and commodity were the main reasons why I kept (and continue) flying with EasyJet. Being a short flight and often carrying only one small piece of luggage, EasyJet became life but also “purse saving”. However, there are probably other more subliminal reasons to why I remained an EasyJet customer. I will tell you more about that in the next section.
Booking and Going Through Check-in
I never had trouble either with booking or checking-in with EasyJet. I always do it directly through their website and the process is not only simple but also fast. In a matter of minutes, you can book your flight and take care of all the details. You can even pre-order food to have while on board. My flights have been pretty plain as I haven’t felt the need to explore the different options that EasyJet offers, but if you like to personalise your flight, and even your local stay, you can easily do so while booking your ticket.
The check-in process is also very straightforward. You can usually do the online check-in 30 days before your flight or until two hours before your flight’s departure. Sometimes I forget about it, and I only do the check-in the day before, so this is a feature I really appreciate. All you will need to complete your check-in is your passport or identity card details. Then you can either print your boarding pass or store it in the EasyJet’s mobile app, which is also a game changer. This app if free for you to use and you can use it to haveaccess to your flight details and even know which gate you need to head to in order to board.
Another great thing about travelling with EasyJet is that, if you’re travelling with a cabin bag only, you won’t need to lose one second at any check-in queue. Once you have your boarding pass with you, you can immediately skip to thesecurity procedure. If you opted for doing the check-in at the airport, or if you have luggage to dispatch, then you will have to visit one of EasyJet’s counters. Please, remember, that there are fees and charges associated with extra-luggage (your ticket only includes one cabin bag).
Getting Ready to Board
Boarding with EasyJet hasn’t been always nice. Of course, I can only speak based on my experience with the route Gatwick-Lisbon and vice-versa, so bare that in mind. One of the things I dislike about boarding is the lack of “waiting space” and the crazy feeling I get every time we’re asked to form a queue. Directions often change from time to time and staff are not always clear in their communications.
In addition, the amount of time we usually have to wait between the moment we head to our gate and the moment we actually start boarding is also sometimes excruciating. Airports are already toxic in their nature to highly sensitive people, so you can probably imagine what it feels like to be standing up and waiting endlessly in a queue made of stressed out adults and sometimes screaming children. Even if you’re on speedy boarding, I believe you won’t be immune to this, so this is definitely something that EasyJet could try to improve.
Another detail I particularly dislike about boarding with EasyJet is the moodiness of the staff. Lately, I have met more moody EasyJet staff members than Security ones. Even when already on board, staff’s quality and niceness has decreased over the years in my opinion. Why is that so I don’t know, and it is definitely something I would like to know or even work through with EasyJet. Staff members are always the face of an airline, so a nice experience with them is impactful enough to gain a loyal customer. By the way, on a more positive note, you always do get greeted by the pilots and cabin crew when you’re about to go in the plane.
Up in the Air
I have no complains about departing (or even landing). Travelling with EasyJet has done wonders for my anxietyaround flying, because there was never a trouble with departure, except the occasional delays due to bad weather or air traffic. After a few minutes in the air and once everything is stable, the cabin crew will come around with the usual coffee, tea, and snacks. I think I only had coffee once while on air. I usually make sure I bring something to eat with me, because although prices are not very different from what you would find in any UK’s coffee shop, I can’t say the same about Lisbon’s reality. Plus, I like to have time to know what I will be actually eating, and I like to choose healthier snacks. Anyhow, you can find something nice to eat and drink during the flight, so don’t worry about that.
A negative aspect of flying with EasyJet is the fact that airplanes’ seats are usually not the best ones. If my regularflight was longer, I don’t know if I would keep flying with EasyJet, because seats are a bit narrow and if you happen to be overweight you may find it a bit uncomfortable. Something I really like, however, about being up in the air with EasyJet is the chance to read their magazine. What? I love it. You can read real people’s recommendations about where to stay, what to do and where to go next. It’s my favourite time of the journey and I always smile every time I see a picture either from Lisbon, Porto or Algarve.
Landing and Disembarking
If there’s one thing EasyJet excels in is the quality of their pilots. I stopped fearing the landing bit of each flight thanks to EasyJet’s amazing pilots. In more than four years, travelling at least three times back in forth between Portugal and England, there was never a situation of panic. Landing has been always smooth and tranquil.
I haven’t had complains about disembarking either. I do need to say though that disembarking in Lisbon’s airport hasn’t been the best one. We always have step in a bus to get to the main building, which means getting temperature shocks quite frequently. Moreover, these buses are not comfortable at all as they have almost no seats and are also the worst option to transport people carrying luggage and sometimes children all at once. This said, be prepared for a curvy commute while standing up and stressing about finding a good position or place where you can grab yourself to and prevent falling. Disembarking in Gatwick’s airport is, nonetheless, a much more pleasant experience.
Would I Recommend Flying With Easyjet?
Here’s the deal: if you’re travelling with little luggage and around Europe, I totally recommend that you check out EasyJet’s flights. I tell you the same thing if you’re an expat and you’re looking for a cheap option to fly back and forthbetween European countries. However, if you can pay a bit more and you’re travelling with more luggage, or if you’re taking a longer flight, maybe there are better options out there to consider.