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How two can fly L.A.-London for $739

Can two travelers really fly between Los Angeles and London for $739? The answer is yes, but not if you plan to take a checked bag or carry-on luggage. That will cost you more.

Iceland-based no-frills carrier Wow Airlines launched an airfare sale Monday that starts at $119 a person to fly from L.A. to many European cities, with a stopover in Reykjavik. It’s for travel Nov. 1 through Dec. 13.

I tested the cheap fares around Thanksgiving (leaving Nov. 21 and returning Nov. 29) and found two round-trip tickets on Wow from L.A. to London’s Gatwick International Airport (LGW) available for a total of $739.

Seats at these prices go fast. If you’re interested, book right away.

But before you jump, consider that Wow charges $59.99 for a checked bag and $39.99 for carry-on items (that’s the online price, otherwise fees may cost more) for each leg of your trip. In this case, you would pay about $119 per person to check a bag each way — a considerable amount to add to that cheap airfare.

While Wow’s base fares are super-low, my Kayak.com search Tuesday turned up other carriers with direct flights and dates available at the same time for not much more money.

Ireland-based Norwegian, another low-cost carrier, turned up tickets for two on the same dates for flights to Gatwick for a total of $881. The flights are nonstop, but you can expect to pay 50 euros ($58) for each checked bag each way.

Two can fly the same dates on Air New Zealand from L.A. to London’s Heathrow Airport (LHR) for $1,207. The flights are nonstop, and allow you to take a 50-pound bag for free.

On the same dates, I also found tickets for two passengers on Finnair (flights are operated by British Airways) for $1,287 in the same time frame. The flights are nonstop so you save time, and you can check a 50-pound bag for free.

Bottom line: Even when there’s a super-low airfare sale, shop around. Flying nonstop and getting a free checked bag for a little more money may speak to you more than the cheapest seat.

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