Published on : Saturday, February 4, 2017
Until April 4, travellers opting for the lowest price tariff can only bring a modestly-sized handbag on board: up to 42,000cm³ (40 x 35 x 30 cm). But after that date, those “personal items” will have to be 25 per cent smaller – no more than 31,500cm³ (45 x 35 x 20 cm). To put that in perspective, Ryanair’s hand baggage allowance is 44,000cm³ (55 x 40 x 20 cm), plus a personal item such as a handbag sized 14,000cm³ (35 x 20 x 20 cm). It is positively princely in comparison.
The Florida-based carrier, which connects cities all over North America, Latin America and the Caribbean, offers little perks in exchange for its low fares. There is no luggage, in-flight entertainment, complimentary refreshments or seat reservations.
Spirit Airlines is the only carrier in the world to enforce such rigid and all-encompassing low-fare restrictions. They stated in their website “We believe in paying only for what you use, not what you don’t.”
Last month, American Airlines launched “basic economy” fares, which was joined by another full-service airline, United, to offer super-low-cost tickets. the European airlines are yet to reach the trend although WizzAir charges €10-€18 (£8-£14) for a large piece of hand luggage. Smaller luggage with 42 x 32 x 25 cm are allowed to be carried free of charge.
American Airlines hasn’t revealed how much its basic economy airfares will cost, but said that basic economy tickets will have the “lowest available” prices, while regular fares will be “a little more”.