Who would have guessed economy-class flights could still get a notch lower? More and more airlines are introducing a “basic” economy class that offers even less.
The “economy minus” option is already being offered by Delta Air Lines. Other major carriers like American Airlines and United Airlines are likely to follow suit, reported Fortune.
Consumer advocates have long criticized the industry’s race-to-the-bottom strategies that have led to less amenities and services in order to boost profits. This latest move to further cut down on those things will certainly earn more criticism.
The standard “basic” economy will be implementing the use of the smallest airline seats available — between 28 and 30 inches of seat pitch. Itinerary changes, refunds, free carry-on bags and advance seat assignments will not be available. Meals, snacks and entertainment will cost extra.
Being the first major carrier to offer its version of the product category, Delta said it was simply providing what consumers wanted: a cheaper alternative.
“It’s popular in that it gives customers who are price sensitive, but not concerned with seat choice, exactly what they are looking for,” Delta spokesman Anthony Black said.
More major airlines in the U.S. are expected to roll out their own version of “economy minus” soon.