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Old Aug 12th, 2007, 01:27 PM
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UNITED ECONOMY PLUS

Any insight into UAL Economy Plus for transatlantic flights?

Would you spring for Business Class instead or do you think Economy Plus is comfortable enough?

thanks!
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Old Aug 12th, 2007, 01:31 PM
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It's the same seat, food, entertainment and service as economy. All you get is 4-5" of extra legroom.
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Old Aug 13th, 2007, 08:38 AM
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don't waste the money it is the same tight seats, same poor quality food etc. The only thing is your mid plane thats it.
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Old Aug 13th, 2007, 08:49 AM
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Well, the cost of getting into E+ vary. If the OP ask it that way, I assume he/she is already UA Premier and can get E+ for free.

For others, UA sell E+ Access for $299 a year, and it's good for the payer plus a travel companion. So, if one flies a couple of longhaul trips a year, the cost per person is about $75 each way. Not too bad, but this person should be close to Premier anyways.
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Old Aug 13th, 2007, 09:08 AM
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Note that Economy Plus has slightly more legroom in the 777 than the 747. Also the 777 has seatback entertainment (but with a control box on the floor where your feet belong every few seats) and wider seats.

Other airlines offer superior service (and free booze) but cramped seating. Take your choice.

Premium Economy on BA and Virgin is significantly better, but costs money, whereas Economy Plus is free if you have any kind of FF status with United.

Business Class provides a massive increment in comfort and space--and cost. Depending when and where you are traveling, you may find discounted business class fares available. These are Z fares on United; I don't know the codes on other airlines. kayak.com can search for business class fares pretty well. The comfort of different airlines business class seats is a matter of great debate and personal preference: some people like the angled flat seats, but I do not. Not all airlines have the same seats in all their planes (I believe this is true of Austrian, which is highly regarded in some configurations, but not in others) so you need to research in some detail if this matters to you.
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Old Aug 13th, 2007, 09:38 AM
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I think UA E+ is pretty good if you fly frequently enough. If you have elite status you get it for free. If you buy E+ it's good for a year.
While E+ is not exactly the height of luxury and comfort, it sure beats regular economy. (I am a fairly ordinary sized male, maybe a few extra pounds so I really do notice the difference!) As for food, amenities, etc., my level of expectation for most airlines is pretty low anyways.
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Old Aug 13th, 2007, 10:03 AM
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Maybe it depends on your height and your budget -- someone 5'8" with plenty of money should choose biz for a real difference; a cash-strapped 6'6" guy would find the extra leg roomm worth spending a bit extra for if he could not afford the more comfy class of service.
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Old Aug 13th, 2007, 04:16 PM
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Depends on how much springing I'd have to do to go in United business class.

There was another post asking about LH vs UA business class going to Florence. I took a look at the fares.

For SFO to FRA it was $900 in economy or $12,000 in biz class on United nonstops. Ridiculous business class fare.

For the same October dates SFO to FLR the economy fare was $1200-something and business class was $3200 or so.

You are mid-plane in E+ and an extra 4" is a big deal to me. If I had to sit in E- I wouldn't go.

I'd buy an E+ ticket at upgrade with miles or maybe pay for an upgrade at check-in, if offered. Otherwise, I'd hope for an op-up.
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Old Aug 13th, 2007, 04:41 PM
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Not an expert on UA, but only YBMH fares can be upgraded with miles. Those are often double the cheapest coach fare.

Not sure what fare does a non-Premier needs to buy to get a E+ seat.
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Old Aug 13th, 2007, 04:47 PM
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United changed the rules awhile back, and there are no longer certain fares that are eligible for E+. So, someone without status on United--in any economy fare class--would need to buy E+ Access, buy up at check-in (if offered), or hope for an E+ seat at the gate if regular E is oversold. By the way, this also applies to passengers who have status on other Star Alliance carriers.
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Old Aug 13th, 2007, 06:30 PM
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Upgradeable fares on international flights are higher priced that the cheapest economy. Could be a lot higher. But what matters is the cost for the biz class seat.

At united dot com you can get a fall sale fare in economy for $842 SFO-FRA-SFO. Low, but not rockbottom, booking class S (not upgradeable).

Or you can book an upgradeable H fare for $1380. It would then be 30,000 miles for the one-way upgrade.

Or you can pay $12074 for full C fare.
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Old Aug 13th, 2007, 07:11 PM
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A better example is SFO-FLR-SFO for $1306 in non-upgradeable economy, $2543 for refundable M fare, or $3842 for business class Z fare. It's up to you whether to pay $1299 or 60,000 miles to upgrade. The Z fare would earn 50% EQMs.

I'd still buy the E+ ticket (by means of EPA and an economy fare if I didn't have status). The upgrade is not worth $1238 + 60,000 miles to me and not worth the $2536 fare difference from economy (unless I really needed the bonus EQMs, 6198 in this case). Not worth it to me.
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Old Aug 13th, 2007, 07:13 PM
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The Z fare would earn 50% bonus EQMs.
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Old Aug 14th, 2007, 03:31 AM
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FYI--a banner on the ual.com homepage this morning says the price of E+ Access is going up to $349 on September 4.
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Old Aug 14th, 2007, 04:02 AM
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One other thing about Economy Plus is to check the actual seat you get - we paid a small amount for E+ upgrade on longer flight a year ago - but on the way home they tried to unload E+ middle seats on us for same fee. If I am stuck in a middle seat, leg room is not the issue.
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