Just under two years ago American Airlines began rolling out Main Cabin Extra, which offers a few extra inches of leg room in the first several rows of the economy class cabin.
American has done a pretty good job with the speed at which Main Cabin Extra has been rolled out, and at this point a vast majority of their fleet features the new product.
When American announced Main Cabin Extra they said it would be complimentary for AAdvantage Executive Platinum and Platinum members, OneWorld Emerald and Sapphire members, Alaska MVP Gold members, and full fare passengers. As an introductory offer they also announced it would be complimentary for AAdvantage Gold, OneWorld Ruby, and Alaska MVP members through the end of 2013.
The end of the year is quickly approaching, so American has updated their Main Cabin Extra policy for AAdvantage Gold, OneWorld Ruby, and Alaska MVP members, as follows:
- They will continue to receive complimentary Main Cabin Extra seating at the time of booking through February 28, 2014.
- As of March 1, 2014, they can purchase Main Cabin Extra for 50% off, or reserve it for free within 24 hours of departure.
That seems like a pretty fair policy to me.
For what it’s worth, United also offers their Premier Silver members (AAdvantage Gold equivalents) complimentary Economy Plus seating up to 24 hours prior to departure. They don’t, however, offer them a 50% discount when purchasing it in advance.
One thing United offers that American doesn’t is an annual Economy Plus subscription (starting at $499), so I’m curious to see if American eventually rolls out something similar with Main Cabin Extra
Delta’s Economy Comfort policy is far too complex to summarize, but they also offer complimentary Economy Comfort within 24 hours of departure on North American/Caribbean flights to their
Tin Silver Medallions (the rough equivalent to AAdvantage Gold and United Premier Silver). Silver Medallions can also purchase Economy Comfort in advance at 50% off for North American itineraries, or 25% off for all other international itineraries.