The world is huge

Don't miss any of it

Travel news, itineraries, and inspiration delivered straight to your inbox.

By proceeding, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

front of plane

United Will Charge Fees for Economy Seats at the Front of the Plane

How much is getting off the plane a minute or two faster worth to you? United Airlines is banking on the fact that some flyers will pay more for the privilege of sitting in the front of the economy cabin—even though the seats will have the same exact amount of legroom and features as the ones in the back.

It’s somewhat unsurprising another airline is tacking on an obscure seating fee. Maybe United should start auctioning off the seats in the front to people who are about to miss their connecting flight due to a United delay, as they would be more motivated to be in the first few rows to exit.

According to Travel Weekly, the airline will start charging more for seats in the front of the economy cabin as part of its new Corporate Preferred program, which will give benefits (including free dibs on those front seats) to flyers whose employers have a corporate contract with United Airlines.

United has not yet said how much they plan on charging for those seats. Frequent flyers who have United’s Mileage Plus Premier status will also be able to reserve those seats for free.

Everyone else? Head to the back of the plane or prepare to pay (or wait, as any unsold front seats will be released for free at the time of check-in).

More from SmarterTravel:

We hand-pick everything we recommend and select items through testing and reviews. Some products are sent to us free of charge with no incentive to offer a favorable review. We offer our unbiased opinions and do not accept compensation to review products. All items are in stock and prices are accurate at the time of publication. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.

Top Fares From