United Will Not Allow Lowest-Fare Passengers To Use Overhead Bins

Delta and United hope to lure customers with cheap fares and upsell them once they reveal the conditions of the ticket. It’s a practice they are using to compete with low-cost carriers Spirit Airlines and Frontier Airlines, which charge for add-ons including carry-on bags.

“Customers have told us that they want more choice and Basic Economy delivers just that,” Julia Haywood, United’s chief commercial officer, said in a news release.

The boarding process will also be faster because fewer customers will be searching for overhead bin space, United said.

Chicago-based United said it would begin selling the no-frills fares in the first quarter of 2017 for travel starting in the second quarter. Prices will be comparable to low fares it now charges for the economy cabin, but with more restrictions.

The initiative is part of United’s long-promised plan to rival Delta, which is more profitable and cancels fewer flights.

(Reporting by Jeffrey Dastin in New York, additional reporting by Ankit Ajmera in Bengaluru; Editing by Lisa Shumaker, Sai Sachin Ravikumar and Ted Kerr)

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