Just six months ago United Airlines introduced a not-quite-Basic Economy fare option for transatlantic travels. Next week the company will complete the transition, formally rebranding the offering as Basic Economy. NOt surprisingly, the new version is even more restrictive than before.
Is there such a thing as humanity in the Basic Economy world? JetBlue is planning a new suite of fare families to include a more basic option, while also maybe fixing the more expensive options, too.
United Airlines passengers will soon have the option to pay more for assigned seats on board. These are not the Premium Plus premium economy nor the Economy Plus extra legroom seats. The “Preferred” seating section will sit behind those and be an option for selection starting in Q4 2018. This news was obliquely referenced in today’s announcement of the new United Corporate Preferred program at GBTA in San Diego.
Informed passengers truly can affect the airline industry. Today’s example comes at American Airlines, where carry-on bags will soon be included in the carrier’s Basic Economy fares, owing to a better educated consumer and websites that help them suss out the difference.
Fares are going up across the Pond. All three major alliance JVs now offer some sort of Basic Economy for transatlantic travel. The Star Alliance A++ group launched its version this week, with sales starting 5 June 2018. No checked bag, no changes and no upgrades are the main limits, though there is more nuance in the details.
The Skyrider is back. After disappearing for a couple years the infamous saddle seat returned at AIX 2018, brighter than ever. And just as unlikely to ever be on your airplane.
Air Canada joins the ranks of Basic Economy airlines this week. The carrier now has five fare families for its economy class passengers and this rollout may be one of the most advanced we’ve seen to date.
Post-purchase upselling to drive ancillary revenue is big business for Delta Air Lines and poised to grow. Adding frequent flyer points to the mix is part of that plan, with significant potential upside for passengers and the carrier.
Market “segmentation” revenue is growing faster than ever at Delta and the carrier plans to maintain that pace. Basic Economy on a global scale is the next step on that path.
Put another way: Get ready to pay more for less everywhere you fly.
Is Premium Economy or Basic Economy a bigger deal for American Airlines? The short answer is “yes” though President Robert Isom offers some interesting stats to consider about the profits the company is seeing from the two products today and where they are expected to go.