Icelandic airline Play has announced a big expansion of flights between Europe and New York effective June 10, with tickets now on sale.

The no-frills carrier is replicating what others have done in the past. In other words it is operating flights from the UK and mainland Europe to Reykjavik where they feed a single flight which continues to New York (Stewart).

This is the business model which has been practised by Icelandair (the national airline of Iceland) for decades.

UK flights will depart from London Stansted. Departure points in mainland Europe, Scandinavia and Ireland include Berlin, Brussels, Copenhagen, Dublin, Gothenburg and Paris.

In the case of the UK there will be four flights a week from London Stansted with a 95 minute transfer at Reykjavik before the onward sector to New York Stewart.

The latter was previously used as an arrival point by Norwegian. It is farther away from Manhattan than either JFK or Newark.

Although Stewart is farther out the airline claims passengers will save roughly one hour because its arrival processes are much faster than at JFK and Newark.

Play says it will have a special £139 one-way fare on sale until midnight February 7 covering departures for September and October.

But if I were to travel on a busy day in the summer (I chose July 8) the same one-way fare would be £306 (based on today’s quotation). Remember though that Play also has a number of extra fees which must be added to the above prices.

Play’s CEO Birgir Jonsson says:

“New York is a critical location for both European tourists looking to explore Manhattan and American travellers heading to Iceland and the many destinations we service in Europe.”

As was the case with Norwegian, the lower cost of operations at Stewart are passed back to customers in the form of lower fares.

Play claims the costs at Stewart are 80 per cent less compared to other New York airports.