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Old Nov 29, 99, 6:05 am   #1
 
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Explanations on Different Airfare Classes (e.g., L, K, Y, etc.)

In order to fully understand the airline industry, I would like to know the definitions for the various airfare classes. For instance, I know that an L class fare is the lowest, K is about $20 more than L (at least on Delta). What are the other classes for U.S. domestic airfares and the differences in price between them? I know that some agents do not explain the differences--I want to be more informed when I book a reservation. Thanks.

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Old Nov 29, 99, 6:27 am   #2
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mbuckner, as you might expect, most of the lower fare classes' prices and restrictions are determined by each individual airline. There really is no point in trying to compare a fare inventory from one airline to another, i.e., "L" might be the lowest fare inventory for DL but this does not mean that this is the lowest fare inventory for all the other carriers (BTW, K fares on DL may be significantly higher than L fares on most markets).

The fare inventory is similar for all airlines for full coach fares (well, most of the time; different airlines have their own designations for full fares like Y06, Y26, YUP, YX, etc.), business (C, J), and first (F, A).
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Old Nov 29, 99, 6:33 am   #3
 
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I agree with AusTXHiker on the fare issue.
Here is a copy of the Class of Service codes from about 2 years ago. There might be a few new ones added since then.
A - First Class Discounted
B - Coach Class Discounted
Bn- Night Coach Discounted
C - Business Class
Cn- Night Business Coach
D - Business Class Discounted
E - Shuttle Service
F - First Class
Fn- Night Coach in First Class Compartment
H - Coach Class
J - Business Class Premium
K - Coach Class Discounted
Kn- Night Coach Discounted
L - Coach Discounted
M - Coach Discounted
N - Coach Discounted
P - First Class Premium
Q - Coach Discounted
Qn- Night Coach Discounted
R - Supersonic
S - Coach
T - Coach Discounted
U - Shuttle Service
V - Coach Discounted
Vn- Night Coach
W - Coach Premium
Y - Coach
Yn- Night Coach
Z - Business Class Discounted
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Old Nov 29, 99, 6:37 am   #4
 
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Thanks for the information.

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Old Nov 29, 99, 7:03 am   #5
 
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Why2K:

Is there any way to tell which fare category you are in by looking at your ticket? or on your confirmation sheet (e-ticket)?
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Old Nov 29, 99, 7:28 am   #6
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The class of service or fare basis is usually printed on the e-ticket. All the PNR (Passenger Numeric Record - the 6 digit alphanumeric) does is locate your reservation and ticket record.

Hope this helps.

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Old Nov 29, 99, 7:44 am   #7
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Note that not all airlines have the same codes even! Some of the codes given for 'discounted' fares are even for "award" ticket codes.

You need to 1) check with each airline individually, or 2) get your travel agent to check the best fare for you.

Y for example seems like it's full fare economy. But on airlines like Singapore Airlines, Y is used for a variety of fares in economy class AND full fare economy! Likewise on British Airways, they use "S" for their "Y" fares - ie Full fare economy. Whereas "S" is the discounted Business Class fares for SAS.
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Old Nov 29, 99, 8:37 am   #8
 
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onedog: On paper tickets I have seen the fare basis code in 2 places. One, on the name of passenger line between the carrier code and and ticket designator. The other in the fare calulation area below the endorsements & restrictions area. The code there could show the letter and digits. For example an A code might show up as A06. The A is the booking class and 06 on Delta, for example, is the upgrade to First Class available on specific routes. The entire A06 makes up the fare basis.
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Old Nov 29, 99, 9:27 am   #9
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FYI...

I just looked at my E-tickets for a recent NW flight as well as an upcoming CO flight.

The CLASS alpha indicator is located just to the right of the Flight Number on each segment, and appears nowhere else on the confirmation slips.
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Old Nov 29, 99, 2:05 pm   #10
 
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The codes vary with each airline however; some are the same.
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Old Nov 30, 99, 6:48 am   #11
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Note that may be useful -
On CO, R & Z designate seats that are available for upgrades with mileage on international flights. I forget which is for Europe and which is for S. America and Asia. So, if you are inside the 30 days for Europe, you can surf the availabilities and direct the agent to exactly the flights that will work.
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