Wizz Air is low cost airline based in Hungary. The airline serves Israel, United Arab Emirates and Europe and is the Hungarian airline with the largest fleet and flies to 42 countries. Its parent company is Wizz Air Holdings Plc and is based in Jersey and listed on the London Stock Exchange.
The airline was founded in 2003 with the lead investor being Indigo Partners who specialise in transportation investments. The first flight occurred in May 2004 from Katowice International airport. The company CEO is the former CEO of Melav Hungarian Airlines; Jozsef Varadi and the company is registered in Hungary.
In 2011 the company carried 11 million passengers which was a growth of 15% o the previous year. They recently also opened new bases in Ukraine, Slovakia, Serbia, Romania, Moldova, Macedonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Georgia, Czech Republic, Bulgaria and Bosnia-Herzegovina. However its biggest market is in Poland.
They trialled and changed their cabin bag policy in 2012 with a smaller cabin bag being allowed for free and a fee for larger bags, depending on their size.
Their head office is based in Laurus Offices in Budapest and it has five floors giving them lots of much needed space. Previous offices were smaller and did not have all of the space that they needed.
Financially the company do not seem to be doing that well, despite having a positive outlook with regards to their finances, Its losses totalled 78m Euros in 2009 and there were rumours that it would go bankrupt. However in 2012, 2013 and 2014 they reported profits which helped them to remain open.
As they are a budget airline they tend to land at secondary airports which are smaller and cheaper. This allows them to keep their ticket prices down, but it does mean that passengers are more likely to need long connective journeys after the flight to take them on to their destination. They have a buy on board service on their planes where food and drinks can be bought from their café and there is a shopping service to buy other items as well.
They have changed their destinations over the years. In 2008 they started flying from Katowice to Gatwick and then added flights from Gdansk to Gothenburg, Coventry and Bournemouth. That summer they added some summer seasonal services as well from Katowice and Budapest to Girona and a weekly service from Gdansk to Girona. They were also able to increase frequency on their Romanian services due to purchasing three Airbus A320 aircraft.
In 2012 they extended to flying from Debrecen International Airport to London and later that year increased routes to and from Tel Aviv in Israel. In 2013 they made flights form Budapest to Haydar Aliyev International Airport in Baku and later that year added a Slovakian route. In 2015 they opened their 19th base in Bosnia and Herzegovina at Tuzla International Airport and stationed a plane there opening routes to Torp, Hahn, Skavsta and Memmingen. In 2016 there was new base opened at Chisinau International Airport in Moldova and later in the year there was one opened in Varna which is in Bulgaria. February 2017 saw a new base opening in London Luton Airport in the UK and they also added three routes to Tel Aviv, Israel, Pristina in Kosovo and Kutaisi in Georgia meaning that they then had over 500 routes. Their fleet now consists of 64 Airbus A320-200 with orders for seven more, 22 Airbus A321-200 with orders for 19 more and orders for 110 Airbus A321neo.
Although Wizz Air do not have a reputation for being poor with their customer service, you still may have encountered problems, such as delays or may do in the future. It is worth knowing what you should do in such an occurrence as you could be due to get compensation for it. Under EU regulations any airline which is based in the EU, such as Wizz Air, is bound by law to pay compensation in certain circumstances. It is well worth finding out what these are because if they apply to you, you could be able to claim up to 600 Euros. If you are delayed for more than three hours, you can make a compensation claim. This means that you have to arrive at your destination more than three hours late, not leave more than three hours late as it could be possible for time to be made up during the flight. The longer the delay and journey, the more compensation you may be able to get. However, compensation is always only payable if the airline is at fault rather than the weather or something else out of their control.
If you flight is cancelled you will be offered a refund on the cost of the tickets or an alternative flight. You may also be able to claim compensation, if the cancellation was the fault of the airline and the cancellation meant that you arrived late at your destination. You may also be able to claim compensation if a flight is overbooked and you are requested to take an alternative flight. This happens because airlines overbook flights assuming that not all passengers will be able to fly and if everyone does turn up they have a problem. They will ask for volunteers to leave the plane and will offer an alternative flight and compensation which it is up to the volunteer and airline to negotiate between themselves. However, if no one volunteers then they will pick people to leave the flight and this will usually be people that paid the lowest price for their tickets or booked their seats last. If people are chosen then they will be able to claim compensation.