Save on your ticket price and get most of the same inflight services as standard Economy, like drinks, snacks, and inflight entertainment. Make sure to check the rules and restrictions before booking.
For MileagePlus Premier members or cardholders
You get one free carry-on if you’re a MileagePlus member with Premier status, traveling with a Premier member, or are the primary card member of a qualifying MileagePlus credit card or a Star Alliance Gold member.
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Seat assignments can be made for unaccompanied minors. To receive a seat assignment for an unaccompanied minor, call the United Customer Contact Center after your booking is complete and you have paid the unaccompanied minor fee. See our Children Traveling Alone page for more information about travel for unaccompanied minors.
Yes, certain seats are made available to customers with a disability if the request is made at least 24 hours in advance of the scheduled flight. Call the United Customer Contact Center after your booking is complete to receive a seat assignment. We also recommend visiting our Seating Accommodations page for more information.
Yes, travelers will still be allowed to carry on approved assistive devices in addition to a personal item when traveling on a Basic Economy ticket. You can find a list of these items as well as other items that do not count as a carry-on bag on our Carry-on Bag page.
A small musical instrument can be carried on as long as the instrument fits under the seat in front of you or in the overhead bin.
A larger musical instrument that doesn’t fit in the overhead bin and is brought to the gate will be checked to your final destination and subject to the applicable checked baggage fees plus a $25 gate handling charge.
Yes, customers with disabilities and customers who need additional assistance will still be allowed to pre-board. See our Boarding Process page for more information.
On trans-Atlantic and trans-Pacific flights, your boarding group will vary.
On all other flights, customers with a Basic Economy ticket will be in the last boarding group unless they're a MileagePlus Premier member or companion traveling on the same reservation, a primary cardmember of a qualifying MileagePlus credit card or a Star Alliance Gold member.
If we cancel or change your flight, we will rebook you according to our usual rebooking procedures.
MileagePlus members, including MileagePlus Premier members, will not earn PQP or other accruals toward Premier status for purchasing a standard Economy seat assignment when traveling on a Basic Economy ticket. However, members traveling in Basic Economy will earn PQP upon completion of travel if they purchase Economy Plus or a preferred seat. PQP are credited to the account of the member who travels, not the member who purchases the Economy Plus or preferred seat.
Terms and conditions
- Basic Economy tickets are nonrefundable and non-changeable except as allowed by our 24-hour flexible booking policy. They can’t be combined with any other fare type. They have no value if canceled or unused. They may be eligible for partial travel credit if canceled prior to departure.
- Seat selection: Seats are automatically assigned prior to boarding and can't be changed. Customers traveling together, including families, will not be able to sit together. Advance seat assignments may be available for purchase during booking and up until check-in opens.
- Carry-on bags: On trans-Atlantic and trans-Pacific flights, your carry-on bag allowance is the same as for standard Economy tickets. For all other Basic Economy tickets, you're allowed one small personal item that fits under the seat in front of you, such as a shoulder bag, purse, laptop bag or other small item that is 9 inches x 10 inches x 17 inches (22 cm x 25 cm x 43 cm) or less. Mobility aids and other assistive devices are also permitted. View our bag policies. You're not allowed a full-sized carry-on bag unless you're a MileagePlus Premier member or companion traveling on the same reservation, primary cardmember of a qualifying MileagePlus credit card or Star Alliance Gold member. Everyone else who brings a full-sized carry-on bag to the gate will be required to check their bag and pay the applicable checked bag fee plus a $25 gate handling charge.
- Changing a flight: Ticket changes are not allowed. This includes advance changes and same-day changes, even for Premier members. Basic Economy tickets can only be changed if they’re issued between March 3, 2020, and April 30, 2021; or between May 1, 2021 and December 31, 2021, for travel commencing between August 11 and December 31, 2021.
- Premier qualifying credits: MileagePlus members will earn full Premier qualifying points and no Premier qualifying flights. They will still earn award miles based on the fare and their MileagePlus status, lifetime miles and toward the four-segment minimum.
- Economy Plus and upgrades: Travelers with Basic Economy fares are not eligible to purchase Economy Plus seating or premium cabin upgrades, use their Economy Plus subscription benefits or purchase United Travel Options packages.
- MileagePlus and Premier member seating benefits: Travelers with Basic Economy fares who are MileagePlus members, including Premier members, will not be eligible to use paid upgrades, mileage upgrades, Complimentary Premier Upgrades, PlusPoints upgrades or any other upgrade types. Complimentary Economy Plus seating will not be available for MileagePlus Premier members.
- Boarding groups: Travelers with Basic Economy fares will be assigned to the last boarding group, with the exception of MileagePlus Premier members and their companions on the same reservation, primary cardmembers of a qualifying MileagePlus credit card and Star Alliance Gold members. Passengers requiring special assistance will be able to pre-board the aircraft.
- If you are planning to check bags please review our bag policies to determine if any service charges apply.
- Your travel is subject to United's Contract of Carriage.
Add United Economy® Benefits: Terms and Conditions
- Adding United Economy benefits to a Basic Economy ticket permits a customer to
- Bring one full-sized carry-on item on board
- Select an available seat in Economy cabin prior to check-in
- Change their seat by selecting a seat in Economy cabin or purchase an Economy Plus® or premium cabin seat
- Change or cancel their flight without paying a change fee (for Basic Economy tickets purchased after April 30, 2021)
- Customers who add United Economy benefits won’t pay a change fee to change to a new flight of equal or lesser value. If the new flight is a higher fare, customers will be charged the difference between the original fare and the new fare.
- On trips with more than one passenger, all passengers on the reservation must add United Economy benefits. Benefits will be added to all portions of the reservation that have not yet been flown (outbound and return if travel has not started, or all segments of the return trip if outbound travel has commenced).
- This option is available on United® and United Express® flights only.
- MileagePlus® Premier® members who add United Economy benefits will be eligible for select benefits associated with their Premier status, including complimentary access to Economy Plus and preferred seating, Complimentary Premier Upgrades, and the option to upgrade using PlusPoints, as applicable.
- Premier Qualifying Flights (PQF) will be earned only for flight segments where United Economy benefits are added, upon completion of travel.
- Premier Qualifying Points (PQP) will be based on the original Basic Economy fare. No PQP will be earned for the service charge to add United Economy benefits.
- The service charge to add United Economy benefits is nonrefundable.
- Electronic travel certificates (ETC) may not be used towards this service charge.
- Add-ons to Basic Economy tickets such as pre-paid baggage or seat assignments will not be refunded when a customer adds United Economy benefits.
- United Economy benefits cannot be added to award tickets, deeply discounted promotional tickets, or bulk tickets.
- This offer is subject to change without notice.