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

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Old Jul 28, 19, 2:33 pm   -   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 donít 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
Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
NO UNUSED TICKET MAY BE USED TOWARD THE PURCHASE
OF A BASIC ECONOMY TICKET.
-------
NO RESIDUAL VALUE MAY BE USED TOWARD THE PURCHASE
OF A BASIC ECONOMY TICKET.
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 Jul 29, 19, 10:00 am
  #646  
 
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Originally Posted by threeoh View Post
Speculation: United doesn't want you to purchase a full Y ticket with your company's money and then 24 hours before the flight, when you are sure you don't need any changes, switching to a cheap last-minute BE fare, keeping the residual value for future personal travel?
Well, but you can still refund it and buy the cheap ticket. And I doubt UA is all that worried about protecting their corporate customers from fraud, especially when many of those customers use a corporate travel office and would get a notification anyway.
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Old Jul 29, 19, 10:25 am
  #647  
 
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Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
Well, but you can still refund it and buy the cheap ticket. And I doubt UA is all that worried about protecting their corporate customers from fraud, especially when many of those customers use a corporate travel office and would get a notification anyway.
Fair....maybe they just don't want regular folks "buying down" from a normal changeable-for-a-fee (but not refundable) fare to last-minute BE deals where the savings exceeds the change fee, and the language / fare rule is applied to refundable tickets too even though it doesn't make sense.
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Old Jul 29, 19, 10:32 am
  #648  
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Originally Posted by flymexico2010 View Post
Then I guess should be fine. It is a MEX IAH HNL itinerrary...
Does MEX even have BE fares published? Canada still doesn't, AFAIK, and I'd guess it eventually will, but I'd guess Mexico/Carribean/Canada will be under the domestic BE structure, as it is with other aspects of those flights.

IME, google flights doesn't call out BE per say, but does call out 'no carry on' allowed, so it essentially does call out BE, but of course, not as well as UA.com does.

Update: just tried it on a domestic route - when selecting individual flights, Google shows an image of a roller bag with a cross through it to indicate no checked bag. When you select all flights, they then give you a page like this: https://flights.app.goo.gl/SrYqn. Obviously, that gives you the choice to select BE or not. When you use the link to book, and it pulls you to UA.com, it does have the basic economy banner next to each of the flight, and below, has a big box with the restrictions, and you have to specifically click to approve the restrictions before continuing with the BE option. So yes, it does seem to warn you multiple times between the two platforms.
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Old Jul 29, 19, 10:36 am
  #649  
 
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Originally Posted by emcampbe View Post
Does MEX even have BE fares published? Canada still doesn't, AFAIK, and I'd guess it eventually will, but I'd guess Mexico/Carribean/Canada will be under the domestic BE structure, as it is with other aspects of those flights.
Yes, there are BE fares published on MEX-HNL. I don't see any on YYZ-HNL, though, so I suspect you're right about Canada. (Of course, Canada has TATL BE).
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Old Jul 29, 19, 10:51 am
  #650  
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Cashing out a fully refundable F/Y ticket an purchasing a cheap non-refundable ticket, whether BE or not, is not new and is both mail/wire fraud and likely tax fraud (unless you accurately report the fare difference pocketed). Not likely a big deal these days. For the rest, one would have to find a penalty fare with <$200 fare difference for a standard domestic ticket and then be prepared to explain what happened should one need to make a change.
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Old Aug 5, 19, 5:51 pm
  #651  
 
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RT required for BE Fare?

I am looking at fares for DEN-TPA and when searching OW fares it doesn't pull up BE even when the flight is N9, however when searching RT the BE fares show up. I read the fare rules and didnt see anything about a RT required. Can anyone smarter than me figure this out as I have tried 300 ways and can't get the BE fare to show up as a one way
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Old Aug 5, 19, 6:03 pm
  #652  
 
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Duped into buying BE?

I just bought what I thought was an economy flight, but is seemingly a Basic Economy one?

I came to United via a GF search: https://www.google.com/flights#flt=L...12*2.USD.51142

I clicked the Basic Economy dropdown and changed it to Economy. I then proceeded to click through to United, landing on the UK-English localization, which showed the price in GBP. After entering my payment information, the site notified me that the flight was repriced to match my currency, which was unexpectedly cheaper ($515 as opposed to $610 or so). I was able to select seats (including E+ ones) complimentary, as expected. However, when checking my flight later, I found that all segments are labeled Basic Economy with reduced PQM and all the other limits (including no longer being able to change my seat for free).

Has this happened to anyone else/is there something I can do?

One curious thing is that if I click through to United per the above, then change my localization to US-English before paying, the flight again reprices to something cheaper, but there is ZERO indication that it's now a basic economy flight.
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Old Aug 5, 19, 6:03 pm
  #653  
 
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Originally Posted by N104UA View Post
I am looking at fares for DEN-TPA and when searching OW fares it doesn't pull up BE even when the flight is N9, however when searching RT the BE fares show up. I read the fare rules and didnt see anything about a RT required. Can anyone smarter than me figure this out as I have tried 300 ways and can't get the BE fare to show up as a one way
There are no Basic Economy fares filed on a one-way basis in the DEN/TPA market. OW versus RT is in the fare type and may not be easy to see on .bomb.
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Old Aug 5, 19, 6:14 pm
  #654  
 
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Originally Posted by findark View Post
There are no Basic Economy fares filed on a one-way basis in the DEN/TPA market. OW versus RT is in the fare type and may not be easy to see on .bomb.
This must be new as just last week I saw a $54 OW ticket in BE. I wonder if this will be permanent or if UA is messing with filed fares
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Old Aug 5, 19, 7:11 pm
  #655  
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Originally Posted by N104UA View Post
This must be new as just last week I saw a $54 OW ticket in BE. I wonder if this will be permanent or if UA is messing with filed fares
id guess this is just normal cycle of adding/pulling specific fares.

Happens all all the time, at least outside of BE, where specific fares, be it OW or RT, get added or pulled without notice. Interestingly enough, out of CVG, Iíve noticed more recently that it seems to go back and forth on whether OW fares are 1/2 of roundtrip. While it took longer for that to come here than many other markets, it was fairly consistent for a year or two. Now, it seems to go back and forth on whether the OW is 1/2 roundtrip or not. Sometimes it is, and sometimes it isnít. So as always, YMMV.
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Old Aug 5, 19, 8:24 pm
  #656  
 
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Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
Yes, there are BE fares published on MEX-HNL. I don't see any on YYZ-HNL, though, so I suspect you're right about Canada. (Of course, Canada has TATL BE).
Nope, no BE between Canada and US, thank goodness.
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Old Aug 6, 19, 10:48 am
  #657  
 
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Originally Posted by rmannion View Post
I just bought what I thought was an economy flight, but is seemingly a Basic Economy one?

I came to United via a GF search: https://www.google.com/flights#flt=L...12*2.USD.51142

I clicked the Basic Economy dropdown and changed it to Economy. I then proceeded to click through to United, landing on the UK-English localization, which showed the price in GBP. After entering my payment information, the site notified me that the flight was repriced to match my currency, which was unexpectedly cheaper ($515 as opposed to $610 or so). I was able to select seats (including E+ ones) complimentary, as expected. However, when checking my flight later, I found that all segments are labeled Basic Economy with reduced PQM and all the other limits (including no longer being able to change my seat for free).

Has this happened to anyone else/is there something I can do?

One curious thing is that if I click through to United per the above, then change my localization to US-English before paying, the flight again reprices to something cheaper, but there is ZERO indication that it's now a basic economy flight.
If you are within 24 hours I'd cancel and rebook right away.

The back-end coding for TATL BE (which can be any fare class) vs. domestic BE (which is "N") seems to be totally separate and sometimes buggy. With domestic you can always tell if it's BE by looking at the fare bucket.

I can't recreate your problem because when I try to click through to united.com I get a 401 error

(Also I'd be unhappy with your 3 hour IAD-DCA transfer on that first leg!)
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Old Aug 7, 19, 1:39 pm
  #658  
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Originally Posted by N104UA View Post
This must be new as just last week I saw a $54 OW ticket in BE. I wonder if this will be permanent or if UA is messing with filed fares
Fares that low tend to crop up in markets that Frontier, Sprit and Allegiant have entered. Now that NK is flying RDU-ORD I see $49 one-ways in BE on AA and UA. I guess they figure they can lure the passengers from the discount airlines and then gouge them to death on the fees to turn a profit.
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Old Aug 7, 19, 2:14 pm
  #659  
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Originally Posted by CMK10 View Post
...Fares that low tend to crop up in markets that Frontier, Sprit and Allegiant have entered. Now that NK is flying RDU-ORD I see $49 one-ways in BE on AA and UA. I guess they figure they can lure the passengers from the discount airlines and then gouge them to death on the fees to turn a profit.
Are you referring to the LCCs or the majors or both?
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Old Aug 8, 19, 1:55 am
  #660  
 
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Originally Posted by CMK10 View Post
Fares that low tend to crop up in markets that Frontier, Sprit and Allegiant have entered. Now that NK is flying RDU-ORD I see $49 one-ways in BE on AA and UA. I guess they figure they can lure the passengers from the discount airlines and then gouge them to death on the fees to turn a profit.
What kind of fees are major carriers with BE fares gouging them with that the ULCCs aren't? I'm sure there's at least one ULCC out there that might be interested in learning more in that case
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