American Airlines has officially introduced its new basic economy fare in an effort to compete with discount airlines. To win over frugal travelers on a budget, this new option, which officially rolls out in February 2017, will cost less than the airline's main cabin ticket prices. Though the exact prices have not been revealed yet, the change is predicted to have Spirit-like discounts. The only caveat? Well, there are actually four, which are listed below.
- Say goodbye to the overhead bins. If you have a carry-on bag, it must be the small kind that fits under the seat in front of you. Otherwise, your only option is to check your bags for a fee. Leave those rolling suitcases at home!
- Your seat is assigned at check-in. Sayonara, seat choice. Regular fliers can typically pick their seat while buying their tickets, but basic economy customers do not have this same choice — unless they want to pay a fee, that is.
- You can't make changes to your flight. Basic economy tickets are neither refundable nor changeable, not even for a fee.
- Basic economy travelers are the last to board. That infamous seat right by the back bathroom? It might have your name all over it when you're in the last boarding group.
Though the airline's description noted that customers choosing this option still have access to free snacks and soft drinks, we can't help but notice that these restrictions are a bit intense. Honestly, walking to our final destination might be a little easier if overhead bins are out of the question. The airline has been receiving some mixed responses to this recent announcement, though most are resoundingly negative because of the tight limitations. Keep reading to see some of the candid reactions circling the Twitter world — jury's still out until the basic economy option actually debuts next month!
.@AmericanAir A charge to select seats, no access to overhead bins. Why not charge even less and we'll ride in the baggage cabin?— Elitist Semicolon (@EliteSemicolon) January 18, 2017
@AmericanAir totally unappealing. Another takeaway. Gonna fly elsewhere gang!
— Bob Tate (@btate2010) January 18, 2017
@AmericanAir Basically one step above the cargo hold.
— VIG (@VIG_17) January 18, 2017
— Carrie Holland (@CarrieinTtown) January 18, 2017
@AmericanAir fact = race to the bottom to become the new walmart of the air!
— JS (@od2be2003) January 18, 2017