Basic Economy is a new fare option offered by United in February, 2017. The price of basic economy is cheaper comparing to the standard economy and usually are nonrefundable and non-changeable. The design of this new option is able to segment markets in a more specific way based on consumer buying behavior and their price sensitivity.
Choosing the basic economy fare, the customer can still have the same assess to the inflight entertainment, Wi-Fi and share the same food and beverages services with the standard economy. However, along with such a low price are some of the restrictions. Comparing to the standard economy, the first difference is reflected in the seat selection process. Customers with a basic economy ticket are not able to do the seat selection by themselves, and their seat will be assigned by the airline before their boarding. It also means that people who travel with their friends or families will not have the chance to sit together in this trip. The second difference is shown on the policy of carry-on luggage. For the standard economy, each people are allowed to bring a full-sized carry-on bag (9 inches * 14 inches * 22 inches).
to the plane as long as the weight of the bag is less than the maximum limitation. However, for the basic economy, only one small item is allowed to bring, and the size of this item is strictly control (9 inches * 10 inches * 17 inches). Basic economy traveler with a full-size luggage will be asked to check and pay for the bag fee and the gate handling charge.