Sunday, October 2, 2011

Third Class

Despite efforts at integration in America, we are not a class-less society. In the US, there is the upper class, the middle class and the lower classes. We have premium, super and regular; first class, business class, and economy. And now, there is third class.

I am speaking of the airlines. I thought there were just the three seating classes, but I have found out today, when booking my winter holiday vacation, that I am mistaken. There is definitely a class lower than the "regular" economy class.

It appears that American Airlines, who usually has the best times and prices for my wallet and destination, has created this extra class. I have now been relegated to the very, very, very back of the airplane, right by the lavatories. First class and business class sit much further up front, and have all kinds of amenities which the "economy" section lacks, such as a place to put your legs and feet. For years, economy class has been where most of us "regular" (ie, non-business, non-wealthy) people sit.

But now, it appears that American Airlines has split economy class into two sections. If I want to sit closer to the business and first class sections, and board and exit the plane two minutes sooner than those at the very back of the plane, I now need to pay an additional $75. I refuse to pay $75 for this "privilege". We regular folks already bring our own food, our knees hug our chests, and we are (or were) the last group to board.

What scheme will the airlines think of next to wring a few dollars out of air travelers? Perhaps they could sell tickets to use the lavatory, or require payment to reserve an oxygen mask or flotation device. I wouldn't put it past them.

No comments:

Post a Comment