Studying in Europe often comes with the challenge of inflexible schedules and difficulty planning trips back home. With exams and final projects determining their availability, students often find themselves in a situation where they have to purchase last-minute flights.
However, finding more affordable flight options can alleviate some of the financial burden associated with these spontaneous bookings. Many students gradually transition from choosing direct and convenient flights when they first move to a new country, to opting for more inconvenient ones driven by budgetary considerations.
To assist in navigating this dilemma, here is a compilation of options that strike a balance between affordability and convenience.
Flights to Sphinx Airport
One emerging option for students is the availability of flights to Sphinx airport. While this airport is relatively new and has limited direct routes, the existing ones are incredibly convenient.
The advantage of Sphinx airport lies in its affordability, with the flights operating to and from it being priced considerably lower compared to other more established airports.
Situated in Giza, Sphinx airport offers added convenience for residents of Alexandria and 6 October, although it may not be as accessible for those residing in Nasr City, Heliopolis, or New Cairo.
The launch of Egypt’s first-ever low-cost airline, Air Sphinx, a subsidiary of state-run EgyptAir, will soon further expand the range of choices available for budget-friendly flights to Sphinx Airport, and to Egypt in general.
Currently, there are low-cost flights operating from Italy to the airport, according to the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities.
Another viable option for students seeking affordable flights is Turkish Airlines, which offers a student discount.
By setting up an account and submitting their university enrollment documentation, students can unlock a range of benefits, including reduced fares on flight tickets and additional baggage allowances.
It is important to note that Turkish Airlines layover flights usually operate from Istanbul airport, one of the world’s largest airports, so it is crucial to factor in the additional time required for transfers to avoid missing connecting flights. While irregularities in flight schedules may occur due to the high volume of flights, they are generally manageable as the airline can easily accommodate passengers on subsequent flights.
Turkish Airlines provides numerous flight times to Cairo, Alexandria, Sharm El Sheikh and Hurghada, making it a convenient choice for students from all parts of Egypt. Additionally, the airline’s extensive network ensures that there are high chances of finding flights to cities in close proximity to many universities that may not be well served by other airlines.
Other layovers in Europe
There are a couple of other layover choices that have gained popularity among students.
Athens, served by Aegean Airlines, offers convenient connections within the region, operating flights to Cairo, Alexandria and Sharm El Sheikh. The transit times in Athens are usually short and quick, making it an attractive option for students looking to minimize the hassle of layovers.
Another popular layover destination is Milan. Flights from Milan are available to both Cairo (Air Arabia Egypt) and Sphinx (Wizz Air) airports, providing students with multiple travel routes. However, it is important to note that some flights through Milan may require self-transfer between two airports, which may not be the most convenient option.
Those are just some of many choices available to students in Europe who are heading back home. While the Turkish Airlines discount can only be accessed through their website, platforms like kiwi.com or skyscanner.net are great for exploring other layover possibilities.
Lastly, an additional tip to keep in mind: if there happens to be a large Egyptian community in a particular city or region, it is worth asking around if there are any partnerships they might have with airlines or travel agencies. Such connections could potentially offer exclusive discounts or benefits.
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