Business Treaveler logo

Travel news, reviews and intel for high-flyers

United Announces It Will Offer Preferred Seating in the Front of the Plane

United Airlines has followed competitors in charging a fee for “preferred seats” on flights throughout its system.

These seats, which do not offer extra legroom or other perks, are standard economy seats that are behind Economy Plus rows, which come with more space. American Airlines and Delta Air Lines already have a surcharge in place for these seats.

United has not said how much more travelers would pay for the seats, but the comparable seats on competitors’ planes offer rates that vary by aircraft, route and demand. United also announced that it is relaunching its Basic Economy fares on several trans-Atlantic routes. On these flights, passengers who purchase Basic Economy will be allowed to bring only one carry-on bag and will be charged for any checked luggage. More positively, starting Dec. 18, Basic Economy tickets will apply toward elite status in United MileagePlus.  Members will earn 50 percent of the qualifying miles and half of a qualifying segment for each flight, with the price of the ticket fully applied.

by Dan Booth