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United's Basic Economy - Discussion, Q&A, ...

United's Basic Economy - Discussion, Q&A, ...

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Old Jul 22, 19, 12:42 am   -   Wikipost
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Related thread: Basic Economy Airport and Plane Experiences (First or Second Hand)

If purchased on united.com you will see a warning like:


4. MileagePlus members will earn full Premier qualifying dollars, 50% Premier qualifying miles and 0.5 Premier qualifying segments for each flight, as well as lifetime miles and toward the four-segment minimum.

Link to UA's description of how these fares will work: Basic Economy.

Here are the key facts:
  • No seat assignments until check-in. Seats will be assigned by the system and cannot be changed.
    *NEW* When purchasing a Basic Economy ticket, you will not receive a complimentary seat assignment but may be able to purchase advance seat assignments during booking and up until check-in opens. If you don’t purchase an advance seat assignment, your seat will be automatically assigned to you prior to boarding, and you won't be able to change your seat once it's been assigned.
  • No guarantee of adjacent seats with companions
  • No voluntary ticket changes after 24 hour purchase period
  • Carry on limited to one personal item unless the customer is a MP Premier member, primary cardmember of a qualifying MileagePlus credit card, or Star Alliance *G
  • Customers ineligible for carry-on who bring one to the gate will be charged a $25 convenience fee to gate-check in addition to standard baggage fees (source: @united twitter)
  • Customers will not be eligible for Economy Plus or premium cabin upgrades. This includes all forms of upgrades (CPU,supported or purchased). Likewise for E+ access (elite or purchased).
  • Customers will board in the last boarding group (currently Group 5) unless the customer is a MP Premier member, primary cardmember of a qualifying MileagePlus credit card, or Star Alliance *G
  • Companions on same PNR will have same boarding group and carryon if one on the PNR has a waiver
  • No combinability with regular economy fares or partner carriers. Interline travel is not permitted.
  • Tickets will earn RDMs (based on fare and status), PQMs (50% of distance), PQSs (0.5), PQDs, in addition it will count for minimum 4 segment and lifetime miles (New as of Dec 2018)
  • Basic Economy tickets will use booking code 'N'
  • Online check-in only with paid checked bag, otherwise need to see a United representative to verify the onboard bag allowance and receive a boarding pass.
In air, passengers will receive the same standard economy inflight amenities including United Economy dining options, inflight entertainment, United Wi-Fi (availability depending on the flight)

To aviod domestic BE fares
ITA Matrix ~bc=N

Google Flights -- select 1 Carry-on bag
related threads
New UA/*A TATL -LGT Economy fare - no free first bag, no changes/upgrades allowed

Benefit impact of restricted economy fares on UA Elites (Basic Econ, -LGT, Light Econ

Pre-announcement speculation thread (now closed) New "Budget Economy" fares

United's Basic Economy - Discussion, Q&A, ... {Archive}
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Old Jun 4, 18, 3:57 pm
  #151  
 
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BE customers have enjoyed the Advance Seat Assignment Offer for purchase since February 18, although it may not have been available in all markets initially.

This topic from March was somewhat related to that.

I wonder if the offer will expand with more options to further increase ancillary revenue. For example, offering BE customers a full-sized carry-on bag with or without Premier Access (including being promoted from BG 5 to BG 2) for purchase while still retaining the restricted nature of the BE ticket so the customer can save a dollar or two vs a regular branded Economy fare with Premier Access.

Last edited by mozilla; Jun 4, 18 at 4:11 pm
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Old Jun 4, 18, 4:12 pm
  #152  
 
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Originally Posted by EmailKid View Post
United's Basic Economy FAQ does not address this. Did not look at 1K page - maybe a question for UA's Twitter team. Do they still answer?

It's a mixed bag on what you do and don't get, but snack boxes cost UA real money and is meant to reward 1Ks. BE is to compete with ULCCs, so just don't see have one on us But of course I don't have a definitive answer as I've never flown BE.
Once you're on the plane, how would a flight attendant know you're on a BE fare?
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Old Jun 4, 18, 4:38 pm
  #153  
 
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Originally Posted by physioprof View Post
Once you're on the plane, how would a flight attendant know you're on a BE fare?
I suppose the phone they use to track GS/1K (among other things) might give you the scarlet letter in some fashion. But I would hope not.
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Old Jun 4, 18, 5:10 pm
  #154  
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Originally Posted by physioprof View Post
Once you're on the plane, how would a flight attendant know you're on a BE fare?
Probably the same way they keep track of other BE pax to keep them from poaching better seats and/or overhead space

Here's what United has to say:

Originally Posted by UAL.com
MileagePlus members with Premier® 1K® status free alcoholic beverages and snacks in United Economy®.
Bolding mine. BE is not Economy, but again, we'll have to wait for first hand report, and we all know FA can bend the rules or make up their own ....

Link to above quote.
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Old Jun 4, 18, 5:13 pm
  #155  
 
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Originally Posted by EmailKid View Post
Probably the same way they keep track of other BE pax to keep them from poaching better seats and/or overhead space

Here's what United has to say:



Bolding mine. BE is not Economy, but again, we'll have to wait for first hand report, and we all know FA can bend the rules or make up their own ....

Link to above quote.
Do we know if the newish FA phone app indicates BE pax? My understanding was that it indicates MileagePlus status, but not fare or anything like that.
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Old Jun 4, 18, 5:29 pm
  #156  
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Originally Posted by EmailKid View Post
Originally Posted by UAL.com
MileagePlus members with Premier® 1K® status free alcoholic beverages and snacks in
Bolding mine. BE is not Economy, but again, we'll have to wait for first hand report, and we all know FA can bend the rules or make up the United Economy®.ir own ....

Link to above quote.


BE is a fare class in United Economy®. United Economy® is the cabin, not the fare class. So yes BE is United Economy®.
How would you apply this line of reasoning to E+ or E-???

My guess and only a guess, is an 1K on any paid fare and award fare will receive the 1K food/drink benefit will sitting in United Economy®.
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Old Jun 4, 18, 5:44 pm
  #157  
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Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post


BE is a fare class in United Economy®. United Economy® is the cabin, not the fare class. So yes BE is United Economy®.
How would you apply this line of reasoning to E+ or E-???

My guess and only a guess, is an 1K on any paid fare and award fare will receive the 1K food/drink benefit will sitting in United Economy®.
Sure, N is listed as United Economy, but it has a ton of restrictions.

Guess we'll have to agree to disagree on our guesses.

Hopefully an FA or a 1K with actual experience will chime it.
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Old Jun 4, 18, 5:54 pm
  #158  
 
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Originally Posted by EmailKid View Post
Sure, N is listed as United Economy, but it has a ton of restrictions.

Guess we'll have to agree to disagree on our guesses.

Hopefully an FA or a 1K with actual experience will chime it.
Yes, I've flown SFO/SEA a few times on an N fare when the difference was +$40 each way for G. In addition to always being assigned an E+ seat at check-in (even though E- was available), I also received my food/drink item. Wasn't treated any differently on board.
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Old Jun 4, 18, 6:08 pm
  #159  
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Originally Posted by cagcag View Post
Hello. Are 1K flyers traveling in BE offered the usual economy free snacks/drinks?
Thanks
have no idea for sure, but when BE was rolled out, UA specifically said that the onboard product was the same (includes free entertainment on the planes that have it, free snacks/beverages, etc.). Based on that, I’d guess yes.

Originally Posted by EmailKid View Post
Pretty sure the answer is no. For all intents and purposes BE is a Kettle fare to compete with ULCCs who offer NOTHING for free other than personal item.
maybe (or so UA says - it’s more a revenue grab, IMO). But BE is essentially just the lowest Y fare class that comes with restrictions. As mentioned, was originally soecificallt stated to have same onbord services. What makes you pretty sure (not trying to be combatitive - I’m seriously curious).

Originally Posted by physioprof View Post
Once you're on the plane, how would a flight attendant know you're on a BE fare?
Dont know if fare is actually indicated, but I’m pretty sure the app on the FA devices could at least theoretically do it. It definitely indicates status, and even name based on the seat they select - I know because last time I did BOB, they selected my seat and name came up with the seat number (they selected this before taking my payment). Couldn’t be that difficult to put fare class, or at least an indication for BE, there.

Originally Posted by EmailKid View Post
Bolding mine. BE is not Economy, but again, we'll have to wait for first hand report, and we all know FA can bend the rules or make up their own .....
BE is economy (what do you think the E part stands for) - it’s just got additional restrictions on these fares.
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Old Jun 4, 18, 6:22 pm
  #160  
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Originally Posted by pushmyredbutton View Post
Yes, I've flown SFO/SEA a few times on an N fare when the difference was +$40 each way for G. In addition to always being assigned an E+ seat at check-in (even though E- was available), I also received my food/drink item. Wasn't treated any differently on board.
OK, my guess is WRONG

With first hand information I may consider BE fares in the future - I have ruled them out in the past, but now that I'm done chasing MM .....

Originally Posted by emcampbe View Post

maybe (or so UA says - it’s more a revenue grab, IMO). But BE is essentially just the lowest Y fare class that comes with restrictions. As mentioned, was originally soecificallt stated to have same onbord services. What makes you pretty sure (not trying to be combatitive - I’m seriously curious).

BE is economy (what do you think the E part stands for) - it’s just got additional restrictions on these fares.
Disagree on money grab, but that's another discussion (yes BE discussion). But UA is very conscious of money, hence my (apparently false) assumption that they would not give away something that a passenger would not receive on ULCC.

Sure it's economy, but it's very restrictive economy - not in advance purchase, but about where you sit, don't earn miles, aren't eligible for upgrades.
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Old Jun 4, 18, 7:43 pm
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Originally Posted by EmailKid View Post
OK, my guess is WRONG

With first hand information I may consider BE fares in the future - I have ruled them out in the past, but now that I'm done chasing MM .....
TBH, if you have some sort of status, BE on short routes such as SFO-LAX/LAS/SEA really isn't all that bad. I'll give up my shot of an upgrade and some measly lifetime miles to save ~$75 roundtrip. I still get the same group 1, carry-on, food/drink, and never failed to get an E+ window or aisle.

Losing the ability to SDC takes some getting used to on the shorter, more frequent routes though.
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Old Jun 6, 18, 12:21 pm
  #162  
 
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Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
Yes, BE has gone international (selectively)
The domesticated version indeed has. I'm seeing Caribbean markets with N fares as of yesterday.
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Old Jun 9, 18, 9:39 am
  #163  
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Basic Economy Upsell: $116 to $528

I almost never book Basic Economy (and have the app set not to show me Basic Economy results)… but today came across this differential, which is a tad more than the usual $25 upsell.



What is going on?
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Old Jun 9, 18, 10:12 am
  #164  
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Originally Posted by helvetic View Post
What is going on?
United trying to run a business? Maybe they've decided that all the extra perks you get with Standard Economy are worth it?
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Old Jun 9, 18, 10:18 am
  #165  
 
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Originally Posted by helvetic View Post
I almost never book Basic Economy (and have the app set not to show me Basic Economy results)… but today came across this differential, which is a tad more than the usual $25 upsell.



What is going on?
Is this a close-in flight?

There have been a few examples of this, where UA is trying to compete with a low-cost ULCC fare without destroying their pricing power for business travelers. So far, they've all been 0-advance purchase G-BN or K-BN fares that don't have a corresponding regular economy fare.

Basically, it's an example of UA attempting to use BE for what they said it was for -- ULCC competition -- instead of simply as a fare increase.
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