Air Arabia vs. Fly Dubai
The Travel Market got Kipp planning a quick escape. Thank goodness budget airlines afford us a cost effective getaway. So which one will it be? Air Arabia or Fly Dubai?
Not only does Air Arabia fly to 57 cities, it has a much more developed and varied network of destinations in Africa, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Kipp's particularly impressed with the number of Indian cities destinations.
Flydubai flies to 36 cities. Enough said. Wait, Kipp must also add that though the airline has been on a pretty impressive route expansion drive during last year, the airline has a rather limited range of destinations mainly based in the MENA region.
Air Arabia seats, well they are nothing to write home about, but Kipp's giving it our vote on this one, if only for the fact the seats recline further back than FlyDubai and seemed to have more elbow room (or at least it seemed that way to us).
Kipp expected really tiny, pokey, uncomfortable seats, but we found quite the opposite on our FlyDubai flight to Nepal. We even fell asleep on it, though we probably would have slept better if the seat budged a tad beyond its 5 degree-for-the-sake-of-it recline. Although, maybe we shouldn't be complaining, after all on FlyDubai when you book your flight you can pick which seat you get and pay accordingly. For an extra Dh100 you can get a seat with extra legroom
Because the two offer a wide range of routes and have some pretty good offers from time to time, we tried our hands at a sporadic and incredibly unscientific random comparison. We tried to book a flight from the UAE to Dhaka for a period of 4 days on either flight and Air Arabia turned up the cheaper of the two Dh1,385.
And though the similar flights at FlyDubai would have cost us Dh1,722 we have to say we are still pretty darn impressed by the offers the airlines puts out every now and then.
The Air Arabia fleet consists of 20 brand new Airbus A320 aircraft. The average age of Air Arabia fleet is 1.7 years.
Fly Dubai recently took delivery of a brand new and shiny Boeing 737-800NG taking their current fleet up to 16 planes. Yes that is four less than Air Arabia, but given that the airline is six years younger than Air Arabia and that it has placed an order of 54 Next-Generation 737-800 aircraft from Boeing we give FlyDubai our vote on this one.
Air Arabia has a common screen for all. A common screen. Period.
Four of the new aircrafts added to the airlines fleet came complete with In-Flight Entertainment (IFE) system from Lumexis. But be warned, using the system will cost you. Watching a film on the new Flydubai aircraft costs Dh25, whereas it will cost you between Dh5-10 to watch a TV program depending on its length.
Air Arabia offers between 20 and 30 KG free checked baggage (depending on your final destination)-excess baggage is chargeable. Unless you’re bringing your whole house with you on the trip, we’d say this is a pretty darn good bargain, so we give Air Arabia our vote on this one.
At FlyDubai you can take on a bag on board weighing up to 7 kilograms for free-but you pay for the rest. Good if you’re a one-bag passenger and that’s about it.
As airplane food goes, the food on Air Arabia isn't too bad-we've certainly tried worse. But when compared to FlyDubai, Air Arabia does have a rather limited, though affordable, menu. Add to that, Air Arabia doesn't serve liquor on its flights since it takes off from, the conservative emirate of Sharjah. So it doesn't get our vote on this one.
Again, as airplane food goes, the grub is pretty average. But a flick through their menu will reveal, FlyDubai has a rather extensive menu and they do serve the crazy water.