Starting this Friday, coach passengers on United Airlines who want to avoid the back of the plane may have to pay up. The airline said it will charge a fee for preferred seats on flights throughout its network. Besides their location on the plane, there’s nothing special about the seats. They don’t come with extra legroom or other added perks. They’re standard economy seats located behind the Economy Plus rows.
American and Delta already have a similar surcharge for these seats. This follows the trend of airlines breaking up their seating in as many sections as possible, in an effort to up-charge for any desirable seats.
There’s no word what the price will be for these Preferred Seats.
United also announced it is relaunching its basic economy service on several trans-Atlantic routes. Passengers who purchase basic economy will only be allowed to bring one carry-on bag. Any checked luggage will cost extra.
But there’s also some good news. United will let travelers use their basic economy tickets toward elite status in its MileagePlus program. Basic economy ticket holders can earn 50% of the qualifying miles and half of a qualifying segment for each flight.