The demand for air travel has been dragged down by the pandemic. But in an attempt to counter the cash burn and attract more people to fly, some airlines adapted. Efforts are made, including advertising the sanitation of the planes. For United Airlines, that also means removing change fees.
Change for Free
In the carrier’s website, it said that it is permanently waiving several fees related to changing flights for all standard economy and premium tickets. The decision affected domestic flights, which began on Sunday. Forbes said the policy would be available to those with ticket fares of the following: Economy, Economy Plus, United First, United Business, and United Premium Plus.
Moreover, United Airlines will also allow standby passengers without any fees. Passengers can opt-in to standby in choosing a flight within the day without any additional charges. You only have to wait for any available seats before being allowed on a new flight schedule.
The free standby is available for all types of tickets. However, this will only begin on January 1st next year. You are also allowed to make several changes within the day without any penalties. Differences in fare will still apply to any flight schedule changes.
More information can be found on United Airlines’ website here.
The decision for United Airlines to terminate change fees will give customers more flexibility in terms of modifying flight schedules. It may also potentially convince more people to travel by air, as demand for aviation is still low.
The Washington Post mentioned that Southwest Airlines, a competitor of United, also introduced the same waiving of change fees. The publication also noted that other airline companies also implemented the same policy, albeit temporary. Those carriers that are not charging change fees include Delta and American.
‘Change Is Constant’
Addressing the customers, chief executive officer of United Airlines, Scott Kirby, stated: “Change is inevitable these days–but it’s how we respond to it that matters most. When we hear from customers about where we can improve, getting rid of this fee is often the top request.“
Kirby also said that several other carriers resorted to “difficult decisions” to counter the toll of the pandemic on aviation. He promised that “United Airlines won’t be following that same playbook as we come out of this crisis.”