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American followed suit after Delta and United, who had already introduced their own Basic Economy products.Because American was in the midst of a merger, it wasn’t practical to introduce the Basic product any sooner than they did.
You won’t be able to do any same-day change, you won’t be able to standby for a later or earlier flight, and you won’t be able to change your flight in advance under most circumstances — even as an AAdvantage elite.
When you book a Basic Economy fare, you’re booking a fully — so choose exactly the flight you want at exactly the right time.
But such a high fare discrepancy would make it difficult for many travelers.
We’ll leave this strange pricing decision up to the airlines!
This can especially be critical to business travelers who rely on ticket changes survive on business trips (though the lack of change ability would probably be okay with most leisure travelers).
Priority Access is not available for any Basic Economy passengers, even if you’re willing to pay for it separately.The exceptions to this are AAdvantage elites who will still board in their respective groups: Executive Platinum in Group 2, Platinum Pro and Platinum in Group 3, and Gold in Group 4.And AAdvantage credit card holders will still board in Group 5, after all elites.American routinely looks at pricing, destinations, and demand to determine where and when offering Basic Economy fares will make sense.Some routes — particularly those to domestic leisure destinations — almost always have Basic Economy.Outside of elite status or holding a designated AAdvantage credit card, there is no way to avoid this.Group 9 boarding really isn’t for the faint of heart — you’re forced to wait around the gate area until the very end, and when you board the plane, there simply won’t be storage room for any bags.All Basic Economy passengers will receive Group 9 boarding, which is the very last group to board the aircraft.There is a high likelihood that overhead bin space will be full by this point, forcing you to gate check any bags to your final destination (at no cost other than your time picking it up when you arrive).If you find a Basic Economy ticket, the price difference between regular economy can be variable (and surprising): you may see a difference of , or a difference of several hundred dollars!I’ve seen plenty of circumstances where the Basic fare was in the range, while the next lowest regular fare was in the 0s.(This can be confusing, since one of the goals of Basic Economy is to encourage flyers to bump up their fare to regular economy.