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United, American Add Gate-Service Fee on Basic Economy Flights

United, American Add Gate-Service Fee on Basic Economy Flights

(Leo Lintang/Dreamstime)

By    |   Thursday, 14 September 2017 03:20 PM

United and American Airlines have added a new gate-service fee for Basic Economy flights if customers bring too many carry-on items.

The gate-service fee is incurred if passengers attempt to fly with a carry-on that won’t fit under the seat, or if they try to carry two items onto a flight, The Wall Street Journal reported. For some flights, incurring the gate fee, usually $25, on top of being charged $25 to check their carry-on, more than wipes out the any savings on the Basic Eonomy fare.

The usual policy is not to charge passengers when overhead bins fill up and carry-ons must be checked, but this does not apply to Basic Economy fares, the WSJ reported. Delta’s Basic Economy allows overhead bags until bins are filled, and does not have a gate-service fee.

Jay Hines almost got hit by the fee on a roundtrip flight to Denver from New York, but checked his bag at the counter rather than at the gate.

“It’s a little bit cruel and unusual punishment,” he told The Wall Street Journal. “They charge you for checking the bag. They don’t have to impose a penalty.”

Independent sellers have a difficult time making customers understand the fees and restrictions on Basic Economy flights. Some now block Basic Economy choices from their offerings to avoid confusion, but may show up as being less competitive compared to sellers who do include the lower fares.

“I think they should have a new name for it, and I’m not sure what that would be, but basic is — it’s not even basic,” Jett Wolfe said after finding out she would have to check her carry-on, KY3 reported.

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United and American Airlines have added a new gate-service fee for Basic Economy flights if customers bring too many carry-on items.
united, american, gate, service, fee, basic economy, flights
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2017-20-14
Thursday, 14 September 2017 03:20 PM
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