Primera Air will offer no-frills service between Washington Dulles and London Stansted starting late this summer with fares starting at $400 r/t.
The airline is based in Riga, Latvia but refers to itself as a “Nordic” carrier. It began as JetX, based in Iceland, in 2003. Primera also has a Danish subdivision and flies a mix of scheduled and charter flights.
This spring the airline will begin flights from London (STN), Birmingham (BHX), and Paris (CDG) and to Boston (BOS), Newark (EWR), and Toronto (YYZ). All routes will be operated by brand new narrowbody A321neos.
That service will expand to Washington Dulles in the summer, with service from IAD to STN starting on August 22, 2018. Fares start at $199 each way in economy or $499 each way in premium economy. Premium economy will feature 2-2 seating similar to a domestic first class seat in the USA. Tickets are available for purchase here. The flight will operate five times weekly.
Why is a Nordic carrier based in Latvia flying from London to Washington Dulles?
The Open Skies treaty, for one. Andri Már Ingólfsson, the President and owner of Primera Air also sees an untapped business opportunity–
We’ve been planning to add Washington from the beginning of our transatlantic flight project. We see a strong demand for this route and we are the first low-cost airline to start operations between both cities, offering people an affordable way of transatlantic travel.
I’ll admit it, I had never head of Primera Air before I saw the press release for the new Washington Dulles flight. I’m in no hurry to try it, but the low-fares will certainly appeal to some. Look for British Airways, Virign, and United to potentially match. That’s unlikely since those three legacy carriers fly into Heathrow, but it likely will put downward pressure on airfare.