Delta is going to try a new class of ticket, basic economy. How can economy get even more basic?

Some news outlets are reporting that Delta will be charging for overhead space if you have a basic economy ticket. However, that’s not entirely accurate.

These fares will be priced to compete with the Spirits and Frontiers of the world, which already charge for carry-ons (among other things). Further, you’ll actually be allowed to use the overhead bins if space is available, but you will not be permitted to check a rolling carry-on at the gate free of charge. Only bags sized to fit underseat will be permitted for free. Everything else will be checked and fees collected.

Schumer (D-New York) opposes United’s new ticket type: “The overhead bin is one of the last sacred conveniences of air travel and the fact that United Airlines – and potentially others – plan to take that convenience away unless you pay up is really troubling. Already, airlines charge extra for checked luggage, pillows, peanuts and headphones and now you’ll have nowhere to store them. United Airlines should reverse this plan and allow the free use of the overhead bin for all.”

As I’ve already mentioned, the basic economy ticket does allow for free use of the overhead bins. You just won’t be able to bring a huge carry-on. And basic economy class will board last, so there may not be much overhead bin space left anyway. But that’s OK. If you’re flying basic economy you will have to pay for a checked bag or travel very light.

I have seen an oversized and overweight carry-on fall on a passenger’s head. The woman removing her bag from the overhead bin lost control of her bag and dropped it on another woman. The other woman may have been injured -she sure was crying a lot. We were all lined up to get off the plane but I notified a flight attendant as soon as I could. The flight attendant reacted like this was a common thing so I told her the lady was crying and probably needs help. I couldn’t believe I had to stress that this woman who had a huge bag dropped on her head needed help right away.

Anyway, I blame the flight search engines that compare only the fare and not the extra charges when they show you who has the best price. And I hope more people choose basic economy so we don’t have dangerously heavy items in the overhead bins.

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