United adds even more ‘basic economy’ seats but beware the cheaper price

The price might be right but they come at a cost.

Image: United airlines

United’s super cheap “basic economy” option is taking over more seats on flights.

The airline’s basic economy fare was introduced last year, but in an earnings call earlier this week United announced an expansion of the minimal seating option, according to the Verge. More routes will have the “basic economy” option, including international flights.

The airline also plans to run more flights and run larger planes according to CNN, which would mean a 4 to 6 percent increase in passenger traffic on United for this year.

However, the company’s focus on earnings and its competition with discount airlines like Spirit, Frontier, and Allegiant come at the expense of your comfort. Even if these tickets are cheaper, the restrictions are, well, restrictive.

Forget a carry-on, all you can bring is one small personal item that can fit under the seat in front of you. If you think you can sneak on a bigger bag, think again: items are measured. Even if you can get it on the plane, you’ll have to squeeze it under the seat.

Passengers flying ‘basic economy’ are also the last to board and can’t change their assigned seat. So enjoy that middle seat by the bathroom.

With more flights featuring the discount tickets, you’ll have to think long and hard if it’s worth it. You might need to invest in this jacket to bring everything you need in your pockets.

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