A survey carried out by Skyscanner, a UK-based flight cost comparison company, has revealed that the majority of those polled would welcome the option of a budget airline when planning a long haul flight.
More than 1,800 passengers took part in the survey, and almost three quarters of the respondents indicated that they would be prepared to give up the frills on offer from traditional long haul carriers, in opting for a more cost effective journey.
If cost savings were on offer, 48 percent of those polled would accept more limited legroom and less personal space on flights of up to nine hours in duration, and 30 percent said that they would tolerate those conditions for flights of up to ten hours.
Those surveyed were also asked which extras they felt would be indispensable, even when flying long haul with a budget airline. The survey revealed that 35 percent of long haul travellers would require an additional two inches of legroom over the 29 inches typically on offer on current low-budget flights. This was clearly the top preference, and considered to be more important than the inclusion of free hold baggage, which was prioritised by 18 percent of those questioned, in-flight entertainment, that was a preference of 14 percent of those polled, or the provision of food and refreshments for the journey, which was a preference of only 9 percent of respondents.
Budget airlines have already ventured into providing services on mid haul routes from the UK, to destinations including the Middle East. If there is a proven market for similar long haul flights, they are likely to want to exploit it.