Basic vs Econo

Old Apr 21, 21, 4:21 pm
  #1  
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Basic vs Econo

For a flight between Vancouver and Edmonton $73 vs $104 so $31 difference each way

Only benefit I see is Econo has Advance seat selection for a fee vs Basic's No seat selection without a higher fee

Does that mean if I want to book seats in advance (with a fee) I need to book Econo?

And what about about upgrade bids.

With Covid I don't want a middle seat
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Old Apr 21, 21, 8:20 pm
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Originally Posted by JohnOClark View Post
For a flight between Vancouver and Edmonton $73 vs $104 so $31 difference each way

Only benefit I see is Econo has Advance seat selection for a fee vs Basic's No seat selection without a higher fee

Does that mean if I want to book seats in advance (with a fee) I need to book Econo?

And what about about upgrade bids.

With Covid I don't want a middle seat
I'd suggest you book AC who got rid of domestic basic economy fares.

With a WS basic economy fare, you cannot bid for upgrades, they automatically assign you a seat at check in ($$ to change).

You can buy a seat at booking with any fare type but if your goal is to sit as far away from others, I don't think that is the best strategy. All in all, buying AC on the route is your best choice.
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Old Apr 21, 21, 10:02 pm
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Originally Posted by JohnOClark View Post
With Covid I don't want a middle seat
You donít want to sit in the middle or you donít anyone in the middle seat between you and another person? My two pronged advice would be to either pay for two seats (yours and an extra seat) to ensure distance, OR if thatís not financially feasible, just ask the customer service agent before boarding or the flight attendant once on the plane. If thereís room to move, they would likely do so for you as a courtesy during the pandemic.
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Old Apr 21, 21, 10:19 pm
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Originally Posted by On Time Reports View Post
I'd suggest you book AC who got rid of domestic basic economy fares.

With a WS basic economy fare, you cannot bid for upgrades, they automatically assign you a seat at check in ($$ to change).

You can buy a seat at booking with any fare type but if your goal is to sit as far away from others, I don't think that is the best strategy. All in all, buying AC on the route is your best choice.
While there are currently no advertised Domestic Basic Economy fares with Air Canada, their Economy Standard is virtually the same as Westjet Basic Economy.




Also worth noting , Air Canada does still have Basic in its pricing arsenal. https://www.aircanada.com/us/en/aco/...omy-basic.html

Last edited by cirrusdragoon; Apr 21, 21 at 11:17 pm
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Old May 21, 21, 8:54 pm
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We just flew today on WJ with Basic fares. There were 3 of us, assigned seating at 24 hours and no ability to change seats without paying fee. We had 3 seats together (3&3 seating) in the back 1/3 of the plane. At gate, I requested an adjacent aisle seat with someone in middle. On the plane, the middle seater was at the window.

This was the first time on WJ in years, what I learned from these flights is that all the cheap ticket purchasers are seated in the rear 1/3 of plane and more crowded than the rest of the plane. If flying on Econo ticket, take a look at the seat map prior to the 24 hr Check-in and your seat will be one in the rear 1/3 of the plane.

We had cheap seats on AC last week and had no problem changing seats without fees excepting front/exit row seats identified as premium.

Follow the advice of On Time Reports above.
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Old May 21, 21, 10:14 pm
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Originally Posted by ken_ll View Post
We just flew today on WJ with Basic fares. There were 3 of us, assigned seating at 24 hours and no ability to change seats without paying fee. We had 3 seats together (3&3 seating) in the back 1/3 of the plane. At gate, I requested an adjacent aisle seat with someone in middle. On the plane, the middle seater was at the window.

This was the first time on WJ in years, what I learned from these flights is that all the cheap ticket purchasers are seated in the rear 1/3 of plane and more crowded than the rest of the plane. If flying on Econo ticket, take a look at the seat map prior to the 24 hr Check-in and your seat will be one in the rear 1/3 of the plane.

We had cheap seats on AC last week and had no problem changing seats without fees excepting front/exit row seats identified as premium.

Follow the advice of On Time Reports above.
Did you request to change seats from the cabin crew once on board? If possible, they seem willing to try to change your seat as a courtesy due to covid 19 when approached politely. It seems this might not be applicable in the future when loads pick up.
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Old May 22, 21, 11:07 am
  #7  
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Originally Posted by cirrusdragoon View Post
While there are currently no advertised Domestic Basic Economy fares with Air Canada, their Economy Standard is virtually the same as Westjet Basic Economy.
I disagree. Air Canada basic fares earn points and allow you to change seats at check in.
Two very big differences.

I would choose Air Canada vs Westjet Basic
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Old May 22, 21, 11:42 am
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If your goal is to just simply buy the cheapest domestic ticket where the prices on WS and AC are the same, buying AC is better because
  • Ability to accumulate frequent flyer points/dollars
  • Ability to change seats at check in for free
  • Ability to bid for a upgrade
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Old May 29, 21, 1:33 pm
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Originally Posted by YYCguy View Post
Did you request to change seats from the cabin crew once on board? If possible, they seem willing to try to change your seat as a courtesy due to covid 19 when approached politely. It seems this might not be applicable in the future when loads pick up.
Originally Posted by On Time Reports View Post
If your goal is to just simply buy the cheapest domestic ticket where the prices on WS and AC are the same, buying AC is better because
  • Ability to accumulate frequent flyer points/dollars
  • Ability to change seats at check in for free
  • Ability to bid for a upgrade

Iíve also notice all the basic fare people when flying recently. They are always in the back, randomly spread across. Even on near empty flights they are back there in a middle seat. I noticed a family trying to change seats at gate with no success. FAís allowed people to move after boarding on all my recent flights. Note that most my recent flights have had less than 20-30% load.

I had one flight where premium was completely full, there was a few people in the front Y and the rest were all spread across the back. There were so many empty rows near the front and middle Y that I moved to a full Econ row from premium. WS still does cater to FOTSG, vacation and AC hater types that definitely believe WS is better than AC at the same basic price lol. Most WS flight purchasers will buy basic, so itís extremely easy to bid upgrade or LMU(at least for now) if youíre purchasing econo. You also canít receive a complimentary upgrade on a basic fare if you have WS status. You have to buy full Y(econo flex) for silver and gold, and at least econo for platinum members.

On Time Reports is completely spot on. Thereís zero incentive to fly WS when it comes down to basic. Fly AC
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Old May 29, 21, 7:29 pm
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WS basic tickets improved seat selection for me as an Econo flyer. There's less competition for seat selection, at T-24 I can generally snag a desirable seat, if I'm not already assigned something decent. All the basic passengers get assigned seats at the back, where I tend to avoid sitting.
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Old May 31, 21, 8:50 am
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Originally Posted by On Time Reports View Post
If your goal is to just simply buy the cheapest domestic ticket where the prices on WS and AC are the same, buying AC is better because
  • Ability to accumulate frequent flyer points/dollars
  • Ability to change seats at check in for free
  • Ability to bid for a upgrade
This is basically rubbish, because
  • Someone flying on the cheapest possible fares will never accumulate enough points to even cover cab fare to the airport, much less a flight somewhere
  • Ability to change seats is predicated by load, and is at the discretion of the gate crew. This is not guaranteed
  • If you've bought the cheapest fare you will never get an upgrade. You can bid on one till you're blue in the face, but anyone who paid $1 more than you will get the upgrade first.
Many posts in this thread sound like they were written by Air Canada's marketing department.
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Last edited by Symmetre; May 31, 21 at 8:56 am
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Old May 31, 21, 9:16 am
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Originally Posted by Symmetre View Post
This is basically rubbish, because
  • Someone flying on the cheapest possible fares will never accumulate enough points to even cover cab fare to the airport, much less a flight somewhere
  • Ability to change seats is predicated by load, and is at the discretion of the gate crew. This is not guaranteed
  • If you've bought the cheapest fare you will never get an upgrade. You can bid on one till you're blue in the face, but anyone who paid $1 more than you will get the upgrade first.
Many posts in this thread sound like they were written by Air Canada's marketing department.
While there is some truth in that, Basic fares are designed to appeal to the person that will choose one airline over another based on a fare difference of $1 and either doesn't care about service or prefers to operate in life with willful ignorance.

The differences between the lowest fare types between Westjet and AC are marginal with AC coming out slightly ahead on their STANDARD vs WJ BASIC fare, which is really about seat choice at check-in as you correctly point-out the points earning and upgrade bid potential is barely worth mentioning.
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Old May 31, 21, 7:08 pm
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Originally Posted by robsaw View Post
The differences between the lowest fare types between Westjet and AC are marginal with AC coming out slightly ahead on their STANDARD vs WJ BASIC fare, which is really about seat choice at check-in as you correctly point-out the points earning and upgrade bid potential is barely worth mentioning.
There is yet another consideration: Schedule/price. I have bought Westjet basic economy from YVR to YUL (in July and August) because AC did NOT have the red eye flight at the rock-bottom price. I do not care any longer about status/miles accumulation. I book based on convenience - price and schedule. With the current loads, even middle seat in the back should not be a problem.

What I am afraid of is that Westjet may cancel the YVR-YUL nonstop like they did last summer - several times. I was stuck at YYZ for 6 hours every time it happened. AC does not do that and the airline (Flair) offers nonstops as well. So far the reviews are not great.

In normal times, Westjet was my choice (on many occasions) to fly to BGI. I hope this will come back later this year.
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Old May 31, 21, 7:18 pm
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Originally Posted by Vaclav View Post
There is yet another consideration: Schedule/price. I have bought Westjet basic economy from YVR to YUL (in July and August) because AC did NOT have the red eye flight at the rock-bottom price. I do not care any longer about status/miles accumulation. I book based on convenience - price and schedule. With the current loads, even middle seat in the back should not be a problem.

What I am afraid of is that Westjet may cancel the YVR-YUL nonstop like they did last summer - several times. I was stuck at YYZ for 6 hours every time it happened. AC does not do that and the airline (Flair) offers nonstops as well. So far the reviews are not great.
So how convenient was WS stranding you in YYZ last year? Sorry but it seems an odd claim given the troubles you encountered when it wasn't happening with AC.

BTW out of curiosity what was the price difference between AC who didn't have the red-eye on at a rock-bottom price & WS?
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Old May 31, 21, 7:35 pm
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Originally Posted by Vaclav View Post
There is yet another consideration: Schedule/price. I have bought Westjet basic economy from YVR to YUL (in July and August) because AC did NOT have the red eye flight at the rock-bottom price. I do not care any longer about status/miles accumulation. I book based on convenience - price and schedule. With the current loads, even middle seat in the back should not be a problem.

What I am afraid of is that Westjet may cancel the YVR-YUL nonstop like they did last summer - several times. I was stuck at YYZ for 6 hours every time it happened. AC does not do that and the airline (Flair) offers nonstops as well. So far the reviews are not great.

In normal times, Westjet was my choice (on many occasions) to fly to BGI. I hope this will come back later this year.
itís a seasonal service much like yvr-yhz.
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