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You are watching: American airlines basic economy seat fee


Editor’s note: This is a recurring post, regularly updated with brand-new information.

Basic economic climate fares are frequently the the very least expensive fares you’ll find. If you’ve booked a simple economy fare ~ above American Airlines, you may have actually some questions. Special, you may wonder what restrictions you face and whether there are ways to prevent these restrictions. This guide intends to answer all of your questions around American Airlines’ basic economy.

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What’s simple economy?

American Airlines’ basic economy is the carrier’s lowest key cabin fare. That comes through some constraints on baggage, seating, boarding order and also your eligibility come change. Beginning Jan. 1, 2021, American airlines AAdvantage members won’t get any elite status revenue on basic economy fares. This guide will answer usual questions around these restrictions.

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(Screenshot courtesy that American Airlines’ web page, tackled Dec. 23, 2020)

American airlines waives some straightforward economy constraints for elites and also holders of default AAdvantage Aviator or Citi/AAdvantage credit transaction cards. I’ll comment on these exception in sections specialized to elites and cardholders close to the end of this guide.

Related: Comparing basic economy fares across U.S. Airlines

Can I check a bag?

Yes, but it’s going to cost you:

Within the U.S. And also Canada: $30 because that the very first bag, $40 for the second bag, $150 because that the 3rd bag and $200 because that each extr bagTo/from central America: $30 because that the an initial bag, $40 for the second bag ($55 because that seasonal travel to/from Honduras), $150 for the third bag and $200 for each additional bagTo/from southern America: $45 because that the very first bag ($30 for travel to/from Colombia, Ecuador and Guyana), $65 for the second bag ($40 for travel to/from Ecuador and also Guyana, $55 for take trip to/from Colombia), $150 for the 3rd bag and $200 because that each added bag

The prices for confirm baggage space the very same for straightforward economy and also main cabin fares on most routes. Noteworthy exceptions the waive the an initial checked bag dues for main cabin fares encompass transatlantic flights, flights to/from southern America (excluding Guyana) and flights to/from Panama. View the chart for confirm baggage fees top top American’s website for an ext details.

Related: exactly how to prevent checked baggage fees on major domestic airlines

Can I bring a carry-on?

Yes, your ticket permits one personal item and one carry-on item. Your an individual item have to be no larger than 18 x 14 x 8 inches and also should to the right under the chair in prior of you. Meanwhile, her carry-on bag must fit in the overhead bin and cannot exceed 22 x 14 x 9 inches.

Related:Keep calm and also carry on: ours 13 favorite travel carry-ons

Can I choose a seat?

Yes, however it will cost you. Girlfriend can choose a specific seat at any time throughout or after booking for a fee.

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Main cabin extra seats administer a bit more legroom. (Photo by JT Genter/The points Guy)

If girlfriend don’t select to salary to select a seat, American airline will instantly assign you a chair for totally free at check-in. American Airlines has actually the following policy for families traveling in basic economy:

If you’re a family traveling with children under 15, and also do not currently have seats assigned, our system will search for seats together immediately before the day of departure. We’ll shot our ideal to save you together, but if seats are limited, we’ll assign seat so kids under 15 are beside at least 1 adult.

Basic economy seats aren’t different from various other standard seats in coach. Instead, they’re the seats the aren’t selected by other passengers before you check-in. Contributor Brian Biros recommends no picking a chair in really hopes of scoring a totally free upgrade. ~ all, you could luck right into a wanted seat or a main cabin extra seat. But I recommend payment to choose seats if girlfriend really desire a window or aisle seat, require extra legroom or desire your group to sit together.

Related: A beginner’s guide to American Airlines economy seats

When deserve to I board?

Basic economy passengers typically board in the last boarding group, i beg your pardon is group 9 for flights in ~ the U.S., Canada, Mexico, central America and also the Caribbean and also Group 8 for flights to/from Europe, southern America and also Africa. You might be required to gate check your carry-on bag, but doing so will certainly be free. However, if you space an AAdvantage member, you’ll board in group 6.

Related:Why I constantly board last, no matter where I’m sitting on the plane

Can I adjust my flight?

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Economy seat on American airline Boeing 787-8. (Photo through Katie Genter/The points Guy)

Although American Airlines freshly removed most adjust fees, the transport excluded simple economy. American airline doesn’t permit any changes basic economy fares in ~ the U.S., Canada, Mexico, main America and also the Caribbean. And although American Airlines allows travelers to adjust after paying a fee as soon as traveling to/from Europe, south America and also Africa, the American Airlines’ fee graph lists a charge of approximately $750 for voluntary transforms to an international ticket prior to the job of travel. So, the adjust fee practically certainly won’t be worth it.

However, many thanks to American Airlines’ an international coronavirus waiver, you have the right to change straightforward economy ticket booked in between Mar. 1, 2020 and Jan. 31, 2021, without a fee.

Related: how to avoid airline change and cancellation fees

Can i cancel mine flight?

No, other than if 1) girlfriend cancel the ticket in ~ 24 hours of purchase; 2) American alters your flight schedule by 61 minutes or more; 3) girlfriend or her traveling companion dies, or 4) due to the fact that of army orders. In this cases, American Airlines may refund the purchase price to your original form of payment if girlfriend can provide valid documentation.

However, many thanks to American Airlines’ global coronavirus waiver, you deserve to cancel straightforward economy tickets booked between Mar. 1, 2020 and also Jan. 31, 2021, for any type of reason.

Related:Leniency in basic economy: TPG readers share success stories and tips

Do i still earn miles?

No, as of Jan. 1, 2021, you’ll no much longer earn any kind of elite-qualifying miles, segment or dollars once flying on American Airlines simple economy tickets.

Related:Where to credit your an easy economy flights for maximum returns

Does having a cobranded credit transaction card help?

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Having one American Airlines credit card have the right to decrease the negatives of paris on a simple economy fare. (Photo by Isabelle Raphael/The point out Guy)

Yes, having one of the standard cobranded American Airlines credit cards can improve your basic economy experience. As a holder of among these cards, you’ll get the complying with benefits also when paris on a straightforward economy fare:

First checked bag for complimentary for you and up come a set variety of companions top top the very same reservation on domestic American Airlines-operated itineraries (the eligible variety of companions varies by card)

Note the you only need to have actually an eligible map — girlfriend don’t need to purchase her ticket through the eligible card. So girlfriend can gain the boarding and baggage services of a cobranded American Airlines credit transaction card also when you salary for your ticket with a card that provides travel protections such as trip delay protection and baggage delay protection.

If you’re searching for a card that gives Group 4 or 5 boarding and your very first checked bag totally free on residential itineraries, take into consideration getting among the following cards:

The info for the Citi AAdvantage Platinum pick card, CitiBusiness AAdvantage Platinum pick card, Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Red, and also the AAdvantage Aviator organization card has actually been collected independently by The point out Guy. The card details top top this page have actually not to be reviewed or listed by the map issuer.

Related: AA, Delta and United lounges have restricted access to customers flying through them: Here’s what to do

Does having actually elite status help?

Yes, having AAdvantage or Oneworld elite standing helps. Specifics elites get the complying with benefits also when paris on a an easy economy fare:

Complimentary Preferred and Main Cabin Extra chair benefits based upon elite status

In short, the main reasons an AAdvantage upstream wouldn’t want to book a an easy economy fare space (1) no elite earnings and (2) restrictive change policiesonce American Airlines’ global coronavirus waiver ends.

Related: credit cards the can help you earn airline upstream status

Bottom line

American Airlines’ simple economy fares come through restrictions. But, travelers with elite condition or an eligible American Airlines credit card can escape countless of the inconveniences of simple economy. Specifically, these passengers obtain their customary package allowance and also boarding zone listed by your elite condition or eligible credit card.

See more: Are Pop Tarts Good For Bodybuilding, Surprising Muscle Building Snacks

In particular, having actually a credit card such together the Citi / AAdvantage Platinum pick World elite Mastercard gives the first bag checked cost-free on domestic flights and Preferred group 5 boarding. So, you can get sufficient value to justify the card’s annual fee after conserving checked baggage fees on just a couple of residential flights.