United Airlines to charge some customers for overhead bin space

United Airlines Plane Jet
FILE - In this July 8, 2015, file photo, United Airlines planes are parked at their gates as another plane, top, taxis past them at George Bush Intercontinental Airport, in Houston. United Airlines pilots are ratifying a contract extension that includes pay raises and gives the company more certainty about labor costs, the Air Line Pilots Association reported, Friday, Jan. 22, 2016. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip, File)

Tampa, Fla. (WFLA) – United Airlines will soon start charging some its customers to use overhead bins on its planes.

Beginning next year, travelers who buy United’s cheapest tickets won’t get to use the overhead bin.

Customers of United’s new “basic economy” fares will only be allowed a small carry-on bag, like a purse, backpack or briefcase, that can fit under the seat in front of them.

“Basic economy” travelers wanting to check a bag will pay United’s regular fee of $25 for one bag and $35 for a second bag.

United sent WFLA this information sheet about the new plan:

“Basic Economy is a win for consumers because it provides an option of flying for less. Consumers will have more choice over fares and how to best spend money when shopping for airfare. Basic Economy allows us to compete with all carriers as we strive to serve a broad customer base.

  • Basic Economy is a new fare category for customers in search of the lowest available price. When choosing the Basic Economy fare, customers agree to bring only 1 personal item onboard (can be placed under the seat). Carry-on bags (i.e. rollerboards) that typically go in the overhead bin will be checked at the time of check-in (applicable checked baggage fee will apply).
  • There are no changes to our standard United Economy fare (that means United Economy customers can bring a personal item and a carry-on for overhead bin at no additional cost).
  • Customers who choose to purchase a Basic Economy fare will sit in the same United Economy cabin; receive the same dining options and have access to the same Wi-Fi and in-flight entertainment as the customers who purchased the standard United Economy fare.
  • Basic Economy will help simplify the boarding process and create more overhead space onboard, helping to improve our on time departure performance.
  • We will continue to offer a domestic first class and we recently launched our Polaris international business class service for customers seeking a premium travel experience.”

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