One of the main things keeping Americans from visiting Europe, apart from the child-like portion sizes, is the prohibitive cost: even if you're on the East Coast, a flight to Paris will set you back hundreds of dollars. Unless you use WOW air, that is, since the Icelandic ultra-budget airline just announced flights to Paris and Amsterdam starting at $99.
Now, as with most things in life, there are a few conditions to these incredibly low fares. Firstly, that $99 price point only applies to flights from Boston Logan Airport (BOS) and Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI), so unless you're in Boston or DC, you'll have to figure out a way to get there and factor that into your budget.
Secondly, the $99 price point applies to select one-way flights only, and is of course subject to availability -- and then you'll have to pay for little incidentals like checked luggage and your seat. This is a budget airline, remember?
Lastly, there's a pretty specific window of itineraries where these prices are available:
- BOS to Paris: Thursdays from Oct. 1st through Dec. 12th, 2015, and Jan. 10th through Mar. 10th, 2016.
- BOS to Amsterdam: Sundays from Oct. 1st through Dec. 13th, 2015, and Jan. 10th through Mar. 10th, 2016.
- BWI to Paris: Sundays from Oct. 1st through Dec. 13th, 2015, and Jan. 10th through Mar. 10th, 2016.
- BWI to Amsterdam: Thursdays from Oct. 1st through Dec. 10th, 2015, and Jan. 10th through Mar. 10th, 2016.
Despite all these conditions -- and the fact that you'll have to arrange your own, likely more-expensive return flight separately -- $99 is several hundred dollars cheaper than you'll normally pay for comparable itineraries (even $400 is a pretty sweet deal).
Hit up the WOW air website to book a flight and hop on this deal while it lasts, because it most certainly will not last.
Gianni Jaccoma is a staff writer for Thrillist, and flight prices to Europe usually give him grey hair. Follow his ultra-budget tweets @gjaccoma, and send your news tips to firstname.lastname@example.org